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    1. Sh*t My Dad Says
    2. Run Like a Mother: How to Get
    3. Awkward Family Photos
    4. The Glass Castle: A Memoir
    5. What to Expect When You're Expecting:
    6. Deceptively Delicious: Simple
    7. Top 100 Baby Purees: 100 Quick
    8. Favorite
    9. You're Not the Boss of Me: Brat-proofing
    10. Gunn's Golden Rules: Life's Little
    11. You Mean I'm Not Lazy, Stupid
    12. The Happiest Baby on the Block:
    13. How to Talk So Kids Will Listen
    14. 1-2-3 Magic: Effective Discipline
    15. Back to Basics: A Complete Guide
    16. People of Walmart: Shop and Awe
    17. Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters:
    18. Be Prepared: A Practical Handbook
    19. Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy
    20. The Family Dinner: Great Ways

    1. Sh*t My Dad Says
    by Justin Halpern
    list price: $15.99 -- our price: $6.46
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0061992704
    Publisher: It Books
    Sales Rank: 9
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    After being dumped by his longtime girlfriend, twenty-eight-year-old Justin Halpern found himself living at home with his seventy-three-year-old dad. Sam Halpern, who is "like Socrates, but angrier, and with worse hair," has never minced words, and when Justin moved back home, he began to record all the ridiculous things his dad said to him:

    "That woman was sexy. . . . Out of your league? Son, let women figure out why they won't screw you. Don't do it for them."

    "Do people your age know how to comb their hair? It looks like two squirrels crawled on their heads and started fucking."

    "The worst thing you can be is a liar. . . . Okay, fine, yes, the worst thing you can be is a Nazi, but then number two is liar. Nazi one, liar two."

    More than a million people now follow Mr. Halpern's philosophical musings on Twitter, and in this book, his son weaves a brilliantly funny, touching coming-of-age memoir around the best of his quotes. An all-American story that unfolds on the Little League field, in Denny's, during excruciating family road trips, and, most frequently, in the Halperns' kitchen over bowls of Grape-Nuts, Sh*t My Dad Says is a chaotic, hilarious, true portrait of a father-son relationship from a major new comic voice.

    ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars A father and son's love knows no boundaries. Four letter words yes, boundaries no.
    Reading Justin Halpern's book brought back memories of my own father's words of wisdom. Although my father (a southern gentleman by birth) was somewhat more prudent in his use of curse words and references to sex, he never hesitated in telling his children (or anyone else for that matter) exactly what was on his mind. I remember when I introduced him to my first really serious girlfriend, a young woman who was more than a foot shorter than myself. He took me aside and said, "What's the matter, didn't they have one in your size?" However, when we later announced our engagement he was the first to congratulate us and brought out the bottle of Cold Duck that he was saving for such an occasion.

    When the author was 28 years old he was suddenly dumped by his girlfriend and needed a place to live when he made the decision to move back in with his mother and his then retired father. Working from his new "home" as a writer for Maxim Magazine gave him the time (an awful lot of time according to the author) to see his father through new, adult eyes. The terror that he had felt in his youth due to his father's "bluntness" began to be replaced by admiration for the only person that he had ever known who really spoke his mind without self-censorship. It was only then that he began to see the wisdom in his father's tersely worded observations and began posting them on his Twitter page with the same title as this book.

    Because Mr. Halpern Sr. has the gift of being able to "swear with great expertise" I can't quote many of them on Amazon, but here are a few of my favorite PG rated quips:

    He was a good dog. Your brother is pretty broken up about it, so go easy on him. He had a nice last moment with Brownie before the vet tossed him in the garbage.

    What happened? Did somebody punch you in the face?!... The what? The air is dry? Do me a favor and tell people you got punched in the face.

    You worry too much. Eat some bacon... What? No, I got no idea if it'll make you feel better, I just made too much bacon.

    If it's not bourbon or sweatpants, it's going in the garbage... No, don't get creative. Now is not a creative time. Now is a bourbon and sweatpants time.

    I'm not sure you can call that roughing it son... Well, for one, there was a (EXPLETIVE) minivan parked forty feet from your sleeping bags.

    I just want silence... Jesus, it doesn't mean I don't like you. It just means right now, I like silence more.

    If you grew up with a Ward Cleaver type of father (or wish that you did) you may find Mr. Halpern's way of expressing himself to be crude, unfeeling, or even uncaring. Far from it. The author augments the pithy quotes (some recent, other's from his childhood) with brief essays that gives the reader a little more of the back story of this unique father-and-son relationship. Is it ideal? I have learned that, for me at least, the best way to judge someone's parenting is by the adult it produces. Justin Halpern's book reads to me as a love letter to a father that always tells it like it is and who made you who you are.

    My father passed away at age 87 in 2008. At his wake (we are Irish after all so alcohol was involved) his former co-workers, friends and family paid tribute to him by telling our own little stories and quotes from a man who could be described as both taciturn and brutally honest. The recollections from my three brothers, my sons and myself included stories and things that my dad said that to the outside observer might have also seemed acerbic or even caustic, but to us it was the way that he showed us that he cared

    This book is not for those addicted to a PC idea of what a father should be or for those who are easily offended by real life conversation. But if you, like me, value frank and seemingly brutal honesty (especially from someone who brought you into this world) this book will delight you as much as it has me. I only wish that I could give this to my dad for Father's Day. He would have laughed his (BLEEP) off!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Political Correctness Quotient = Zero
    To echo what others have said this book is hilarious. It's also sweet and touching. Justin's dad is a gruff Vietnam vet, retired research doctor who is honest to a fault. He's someone who knows himself and has the courage and a burning need to speak his mind. He also loves his family to distraction. Justin's dad is Jewish and his mom a quiet, loving Catholic and though their child rearing approaches seem as different as their religions they make a good parenting team.

    Here are a few quotes which are NOT the funniest in the book but one's that are relatively lacking in four letter words:

    On Getting an Internship at Quentin Tarantino's Production Company:

    "That is one ugly son of a `gun'.....Oh, yeah, no congratulations. If you see him, try not to stare at his face if you've eaten anything."

    After Justin moves out"

    "You just barge in and take whatever you want, whenever you want it. It's like you're the ********* SS I'm living in ******* Nazi Germany...."

    At the End of the Day, at Least You a Have a Family:

    "So, there you go. Your mother thinks you're handsome. This should be an exciting day for you."

    On a hypothesized life of crime:

    "You always got us. We're family. We ain't going anywhere. Unless you go on a ******* killing spree or something."

    "I would still love you Justy. I would just want to know why you did it," my mom said earnestly.

    All these quotes can seem a bit over the top when you read them out of context but they never come across as glib or hate filled.....just honest. Justin was the youngest of three sons and the last chapter of the book is the story of one of Justin's love affairs gone awry and his dad comforting by telling the story of his first wife's life and death. The best thing about this book, besides the humor of course, is the emotional honestly.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A great worthwhile read
    I opened this book last night, and didn't put it down until I read it through. A quick, easy read, this book is gut bustingly funny...and it's not just a bunch of hilarious quotes, it's also a good, heartfelt story with family values and moral components intertwined. The language is very raw, so if you are offended by any or all of the entire curse word dictionary, this book may not be for you.

    I found it refreshing that there is someone out there who is all about being completely honest and transparent, and doesn't beat around the bush, especially in society's current state, where everything offends someone somewhere.

    Must read.

    5-0 out of 5 stars I laughed to hard that I was afraid I wouldn't be allowed on my flight.
    I picked this book because it came up as a recommendation and recently someone had mentioned the blog wwhich had inspired this book.

    This was a really quick, funny, and touching read. Initially I thought this was just going to be about the outrageous things the author's father spouted, but it became the portrait of a wise. loving dad who seems unable to speak without referencing defecation in some way. When you read the book you really get the idea that the author is learning from his dad, who is admittedly a little rough around the edges, how to be a decent human being. Mr. Halpern doesn't sound like Ward Cleaver, but he values honesty and fair play, and he loves his family, and this is abundantly clear in what a likable person the author seems to be. I think it's also a deft touch that the author lets his fathers words, and the stories surrounding those words, tell the tale without underlining The Point, like some sort of Wonder Years voice over.

    Not every word the senior Halpern utters is politically correct, which is part of the humor, and he obviously embarrassed his son on occasion, but this book seems like a loving tribute to a guy who clearly loves his son even while calling him a dummy. (Believe it or not.)The author's father might not be a model parent by the standards of parenting books, but underneath the abrasiveness is the type of parent that raises kids who know they're loved and supported.

    I truly laughed out loud at least a dozen times, most of them while waiting to board a plane. I was a little concerned they might think I'd spent too much time at the airport bar, but I was having a hard time holding back the most obvious sign of my enjoyment. The title says it all about the language contained inside though, and much of the humor comes from a quite colorful vocabulary. Remember Ralphie in A Christmas Story saying his father worked in profanity the way other artists might work in oils or clay? That!

    Please note this is a pretty quick read with the print version being 176 pages as I'm aware this might figure into whether or not a potential reader might find it worth the current cost. I thought this was a great read, but folks on a budget or who have a set price might want to wait.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Funniest book I've read in a long time
    I'm sure a most people feel this way, but I think the reason this book is so funny to me is because I can hear all of the quotes coming out of my Dad's mouth as I read them. Justin's story telling method is quick and to the point, which keeps the book all the more engaging and interesting. Typically a book like this would be something you'd read every once in a while... I found myself reading it non-stop and then going back for more when I was done with a "chapter". Great book, perfect light reading, and hopefully not the last we hear from Justin's Dad.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Dad Stories are the BEST
    I loved this book. I heard my old man and my grandpa in some of the quotes. I am happy to see that so far all of the reveiws are 5 stars - I am sure there will be a poor review sooner or later, but you can ignore those.
    My dad never used language quite as salty as Justin's dad, but his point was the same. My dad did not say I love you on a regular basis, however, he would show up at your house ready to build a shed, pour a sidewalk, install a patio, or build a deck at 6am ready to roll and wondering what the hell you were doing since you weren't already half done. Which would not have been any good anyway since you would have been doing it wrong. THAT is how a DAD shows love - a Father can only say I love you.
    When I get together with friends, my dad always comes up as a topic of conversation. Stories about my dad are always popular and always end in laughter. This is a book full of dad stories and I am happy to say they are every bit as good (and some quite a bit better than) stories I tell about my dad.
    If you don't think this book is funny and heartwarming, I truly feel sorry for you - you have missed out in life. Justin's dad is not mean, he just tells it like it is. The truth is rarely pretty, and life is not rated G.
    This book is not just random quotes, it has several short, easy to read chapters that tell you a bit about life in the Halpern home and how Dr. Halpern shaped the boys' lives. Each chapter ends with a dozen or so hilarious quotes from Justin's dad.
    I bought one for my dad and one for my wife's dad - this is a can't miss Father's Day gift - provided of course, your Father is also a DAD.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Hilarious!!
    If you like the quotes (and who doesn't???) then you will LOVE this book. There are even more gems from Sam, some of the best yet, plus stories that provide context and touching moments, as well as more hilarity. I seriously couldn't put it down and I will definitely be giving at as a gift all year...

    5-0 out of 5 stars Funniest Book I ever read
    Hysterical. I tried reading it on the subway and I was laughing so hard I was afraid people were going to think I was crazy (Justin's father is thinking "why do you care what other people think, Weenie?").

    Justin is a funny guy and his father is so unbelievably blunt, he is hard to believe. The best part though, was as the book went on, you realized how much of a good guy Sam Halpern is and how much he loved his son and family.

    A story of fatherhood from a man's man perspective. ... Read more

    2. Run Like a Mother: How to Get Moving--and Not Lose Your Family, Job, or Sanity
    by Sarah Bowen Shea, Dimity McDowell
    Kindle Edition (2010-03-23)
    list price: $14.99
    Asin: B003D3N2AQ
    Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing
    Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    In Run Like a Mother, authors Dimity McDowell and Sarah Bowen Shea offer both inspirational advice and practical strategies to help multitasking women make running part of their busy lives.

    McDowell and Shea understand the various external and internal forces in everyday life that can unintentionally keep a wife--mother--working woman from lacing up her shoes and going for a run. Because the authors are multihyphenates themselves, Run Like a Mother is driven by their own running expertise and real-world experience in ensuring that running is part of their lives.

    More than a book, Run Like a Mother is essentially a down-to-earth, encouraging conversation with the reader on all things running, with the overall goal of strengthening a woman's inner athlete.

    Of course, real achievement is a healthy mix of inspiration and perspiration, which is why the authors have grounded Run Like a Mother in a host of practical tips on shoes, training, racing, nutrition, and injuries, all designed to help women balance running with their professional and personal lives. ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars An inspiring read to make you lace up the shoes
    I bought this book with a lot of hope and some trepidation. I'm a lapsed runner, and my last serious race dates back to the postpartum year after my first child was born, when I was eager to show myself I still had my athletic mojo. I just had my fifth child, and ordered this book to help me get inspired again. The authors' voices are real, thankfully, and the essays are honest and accessible. The training tips are great, because they're rooted in an understanding all the things mom use as excuses NOT to run. But what got me really lacing up my shoes again was the page full of short quotes by women saying how they feel after running. Powerful. Competent. Strong. Optimistic. It was like a quadruple dose of any of those herbal mood-boosters hocked by health magazines!

    5-0 out of 5 stars So relatable, it's sick!
    Since finding this book (and blog! and tweets!), I have been completely entertained and inspired and able to connect with a whole new community of runner-mamas.

    This book is so utterly relatable, it is sick! Even as a newbie runner! The moments of "O-M-G! That is EXACTLY how I feel" were countless, as a mom, spouse, runner, wannabe writer and overall multi-tasking-life balancer.

    The book inspired me, me made me laugh out loud causing my fellow commuter train riders to stop and stare (As soon as I would snort, I would hold up the book so everyone would get a peek...long enough for them to write down the title and and go buy it themselves!)

    This is my go-to book for prezzies for my runner mama friends and has saved the day with some much needed inspiration after the oh-let-it-be-over ugly runs.

    I savored every chapter like a rich ooey-gooey chocolately dessert and was thrilled to find more even more witty (and oh so true!) writing online through the blog

    Seriously, check it out, you won't be disappointed.

    5-0 out of 5 stars I'm not a mother, but could still relate
    I bought this book after hearing about it from several people. As my title says, I'm not a mother, but I could relate to most of the book.

    I found the writing very easy to follow--as if it were a conversation--and refreshing. I laughed out loud at some things and it gave me that little "umph" to get back to my running. I felt like I got to know Dimity and Sarah, just by following along in their journeys.

    I would definitely recommend this to others.

    5-0 out of 5 stars For Female Athletes Everywhere
    Run Like a Mother feels like one of those conversations you have with a friend on a long run. It's a book that all female athletes can relate to, regardless of motherhood status or running experience. However, for those of us who both run marathons and mother small children, it's an especially relatable book. At times it's part memoir--telling of Sarah's and Dimity's journeys as runners and marathoners (including a few race reports!), and other times it's more like a helpful training manual--giving advice on running gear, nutrition, and staging a post-pregnancy comeback. You won't find a 16-week marathon training plan in here, but you'll emerge from this book knowing what worked and didn't work for Sarah and Dimity as they trained. As a running coach, I liked the technical talk about running 8 X 400 meters and other training-specific tidbits. But as a mother and a fellow female athlete, I think I most enjoyed the deeply personal revelations about body image, weight, marriage, and mothering. I loved the personal essay format. By the end of the book, you'll feel like you have two new friends: Sarah Bowen Shea and Dimity McDowell.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Inspiring and laugh out loud entertaining
    I'm a mother of two and a fairly competitive runner (with myself). I love this book. The writers are honest and get right down to what is real. And this is what makes some of the excerpts laugh out loud funny. I so relate! But likewise, it is very honest about how difficult it is to run and be a strong runner while balancing kids and family. I read it an excerpt at night night for inspiration for the next day. It sounds corny, but I do. After having D, I know how hard it is to keep the fitness up. So many days I'd rather sit and hold the baby and be at home. But running makes me feel real, at peace and clean. I know this, but I also need the push. The pull, at times, is strong to stay home with the "kidlets." So thanks gals!

    Clothing tips, stories about racing, training, just everyday runs and how to pull yourself out of bed to get out on the road. Pregnancy and running, recovering from giving birth and beginning to run again and all that is involved in that. Right on and inspirational! The quotes and facts from regular runners make me feel part of a great club of women who push each other and support one another in our every day struggles to make the run happen. Totally inspiring. Sarah and Dimity know runners! And I totally feel a closer bond to all the mommy runners out there. I'm going to buy this book for all my mommy running friends.

    I just bought the book for my friend who is off to Boston in a week and am giving it to so she can indulge on her plane ride there. She has two kids, 5 and 3 and worked her butt off to get to Boston.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Must Read
    I purchased this book when I was training to walk/run my first half marathon in my life. As I am not a runner per se I was skeptical about how much this book would pertain to me. I was pleasantly suprised. The book is well written and truly is a must read for anyone who is a ruuner or thinking about becoming a runner. The book is entertaining, informative and fun. It also would make a great gift for a runner in your life.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Run Like A Mother Will Give You The Strength For Motherhood
    I love running. I especially love running as a mom. It is my "me" time, my recharge time and one of the few things that is just for me. I so enjoyed every bit of this book from the humor to the tips. I love any book that inspires moms to take care of themselves and to realize that they can run, will love to run and deserve to run!

    Thank you Sarah and Dimity for giving a shout out to Stroller Strides!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Read like a runner
    A friend of mine recommended this book to me as a new runner, and she was right! It's motivational and informative. I read part of it while on an airplane and it was all I could do not to run up and down the aisle! A great read for all running mothers!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great book for lady runners
    This one's for the ladies. The ones who like to move and move fast. It's called Run Like a Mother: How to Get Moving and Not Lose Your Family, Job, or Sanity by Dimity McDowell and Sarah Bowen Shea. It all started with two women who had just had children, trying to get back into running shape. They decided to pitch an article to Runner's World about their journey. That whole experience with them trying to balance family, work, and running lead them to write this book.

    There is a lot of great advice in here for runners of all ages, but it is geared toward time crunched mothers who have to consider their families in their decisions. They give advice on nutrition, racing, finding motivation, and managing children and husbands. Their insight is both humorous and helpful. This is a great read for women athletes who can relate to the authors' experiences and find inspiration in their successes.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Absolute greatness
    This book was absolutely wonderful. I have really enjoyed reading it and saddened by finishing the final chapter. The words of Sarah and Dimty really stayed with me - during runs, during my wanting to not run. I am buying this as gifts for all my running mother friends. I laughed out loud and found myself saying "thank you" for touching on all subjects that us mothers want to ask, but are afraid to. Loved it!!!! ... Read more

    3. Awkward Family Photos
    by Mike Bender, Doug Chernack
    list price: $15.00 -- our price: $8.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0307592294
    Publisher: Three Rivers Press
    Sales Rank: 45
    Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Based on the hit website, (“painful, regrettable, horrifyingly awesome snaps of family bonding, you will laugh so hard that people in adjoining offices will ask what’s wrong with you”—Esquire), this full color book features never-before-seen photos and hilarious personal stories covering everything from uncomfortable moments with relatives, teen angst, sibling rivalry, and family vacations from hell. Cringe at the forced poses, bad hair, and matching outfits--all prompting us to look at our own families and celebrate the fact that we're not alone. Nothing says awkward better than an uncomfortable family photograph! ... Read more


    4-0 out of 5 stars What A Hoot!, April 25, 2010

    Customer review from the Amazon Vine™ Program (What's this?)
    As you start reading the introduction to this book you'll find yourself chuckling but as you get futher into it you will be laughing out loud to strange looks from your dear hubby or dear children or for that matter anyone within hearing distance. Some of the pictures are just above and beyond hysterical and the captions with them are perfect. I can actually picture myself in some of the circumstances with which the photos had been taken. I'm sure if I went digging through my family photo albums I would find some hilarious moments trapped in motion that will never be forgotten. Oh and I'm sure there will be a few that I wish would be forgotten but good gosh if you can't have a sense of humor and laugh then you're missing out on a major joy in life. This book will give you joy, laughter and a number of looks from those you love or are near to gain there interest. The one thing I suggest is that you have a box of tissues to wipe those tears of laughter and make sure there is a bathroom nearby as you might just piddle by accident. Enjoy.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A humorous light-hearted look at our worst family pictures, April 27, 2010

    Customer review from the Amazon Vine™ Program (What's this?)
    I love the website and I had known about that before knowing there was a companion book. So when I saw there was a book too I knew I'd enjoy it.

    The book takes all the old family photos you remember and displays them with funny and sometimes very apt comments. A very delightful read, and it may bring to mind some of your own less fantastic family portraits. I especially love the ones from teh 1970's. That seems to be the funniest decade to me, and I have some doosies from back then too.

    Over and above the photos there are humorous anticdoes people have sent in about the funny moments that happened in their families, many I think we can all identify with. The dad who makes an awkward joke, the aunt who always says exactly what is on her mind, or the cheap grandparents who regift presents.

    I would recommend this book to anyone. The humor is pretty universal and you won't find much offensive. Just poking fun at family photos and our family quirks.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Hilarious, but not as funny as the website, April 19, 2010

    Customer review from the Amazon Vine™ Program (What's this?)
    It was inevitable that the folks at awkward family photos would convert their popular website into a book. For the most part, it's hilarious. It's more or less just like the website with photo after photo of people of all ages showing off their highly questionable tastes, and then capturing these low moments for eternal posterity. If I had one complaint it would be that the captions seem less creative and biting than those you find on the website. Maybe I'm imagining this, but part of what makes the website so funny is the commentary through the captions, and the book seems to be a little more family friendly.
    Something new that gets introduced in this print version is the authors letting some of the people in the photos make comments on their own pictures. While this is a good idea in theory, it doesn't really work. The random people make pedestrian comments on their own photos, and the book loses a lot of its humor and charm in the process.
    Having said that, if you're a frequent visitor of the website, this book is a must buy. The photos in this book all seem to be exclusive to the print version, and there are some definite classics in here!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Fun for the whole [AWKWARD] family!, April 27, 2010

    Customer review from the Amazon Vine™ Program (What's this?)
    Let's face it: Chances are good that somewhere in a shoebox in the crawlspace of your parents' place is a photo you wish no one would ever see. EVER. Be it your once high-style haircut, that "amazing" sweater, that time when the camera snapped at exactly the wrong time to capture your weirdest face ever...

    Well, you're in luck! One quick flip through AWKWARD FAMILY PHOTOS, and that picture is gonna look a whole lot better!

    This is a case when the title really says it all. The photos contained in this book are truly remarkable in that they put us all on hilarious (and cringe-inducing) display. Based on the popular website of the same name, AWKWARD FAMILY PHOTOS is an homage to the family album, the one you wished didn't exist. Organized by category (ie: The Family Portrait, Mom & Dad, Grandma & Grandpa, The Vacation, Weddings, The Family Pet, etc...), each photo has something to smirk at. See the family black sheep on proud display! Marvel at the horrific matching outfits! Be amazed by the person who really THOUGHT they were cool! Wonder at the oddly inappropriate expression! What father in their right mind would ever wear THAT?! Mullets, mullets, and more mullets! View the pose that at one time SEEMED like a good idea! And the most frequent question of all: "WHAT THE HECK?!"

    The photos range from sublimely delightful to downright painful (in a snort-its-so-funny sort of way). You'll laugh. You'll want to share this with friends so you can suffer together. You'll probably see shadows of yourself in more places that you imagined. Well, at least you'll see your crazy Uncle Chuck.

    Augmenting the photos are spot-on captions, awkwardly affectionate introductions, and some truly funny anecdotes (presumably from visitors to the website) that had me chortling aloud. One has to admire the courage (and remarkable sense of humor) that many of the photo submitters showed, putting their most awkward moments on display. I applaud and thank you all.

    Interestingly enough, with this amazing collection of awkwardness, there's nothing mean-spirited about this book. It doesn't aim to make fun of people, but rather allow us to know that we're not alone. Author/compilers Mike Bender and Doug Chernack gracefully state a goal that this book is sure to accomplish: "It is our hope that this book will bring all our families a little closer together as we acknowledge those special times when we wished we were a lot farther apart." I'd heartily say, well done guys.

    5-0 out of 5 stars great book to help the tense family get togethers, May 5, 2010
    Love the pictures but really love the short stories that are added in. Mike and Doug did an amazing job encouraging people to share their very personal and embarrasing stories. I would love to see what these people look like now. I can't wait to go through my photos and submit them for the follow up book.
    This is a great book to give to your extended family to help the "awkward" family dinners.

    5-0 out of 5 stars hilarious, May 4, 2010
    if you've ever been the subject of a horrific family photo, you will love this book. it documents every painful moment of your awkward childhood, teenage years, weddings and more. if your family is awkward (and they all are) you just might see yourself in one of the genius photos within. enjoy!

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Funny Book That Makes A Great Gift, May 4, 2010
    If you like the blog, you'll love the book. More zany fun from the guys at awkward family photos. The pictures are hilarious--and it is amazing what people do to their families--and the captions add another level of humor.

    One important note: The major criticism I have seen in the comments is that people are disappointed that the book is in black and white. IT IS NOT!!! Some people must have gotten a pre-publication version because mine is in lovely color. So don't be (accidentally) misled. Read it, look at it, and enjoy it.

    5-0 out of 5 stars In a word: Awesome, May 4, 2010
    I'm not going to lie, I'm a little biased here, BECAUSE I'M IN THE BOOK, but it's not like I'm getting any money for it so not THAT biased. Even if you've seen the whole website you should STILL get the book because there are EXCLUSIVE photos (like mine) that are not on the website. Obviously the whole thing is hilarious, but especially page 119.

    5-0 out of 5 stars lots of laughs and memories -so good during these trying times, May 4, 2010
    Loved the book- made me laugh and remember so many of my own family's many awkward moments- smiled all the way through- anyone of any age and from any place will be able to relate to so many of these photos and comments- I feel that it is a great gift item and is truly timeless- my face hurt from smiling-I feel like I know many of the people in the book

    4-0 out of 5 stars Good for gift-giving, May 4, 2010

    Customer review from the Amazon Vine™ Program (What's this?)
    I find the Awkward Family Photo site to be very amusing - you're guaranteed to find a photo that makes you think of a similar circumstance in your own family. The book is a nice encapsulation of the site, with some of the best photos (plus a few that are not on the site).

    I probably would not buy this book for myself since it really does not add any further dimension to the concept than you get by going to the website, but it's a great book for gift-giving, especially for siblings (perhaps with a few of the more applicable photos tagged). It's a pretty slim volume, however - wish there were more to it, or more unique content versus the website. Still, and enjoyable (if not cringe producing) read. ... Read more

    4. The Glass Castle: A Memoir
    by Jeannette Walls
    Paperback (2006-01-09)
    list price: $15.00 -- our price: $9.00
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 074324754X
    Publisher: Scribner
    Sales Rank: 140
    Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Jeannette Walls grew up with parents whose ideals and stubborn nonconformity were both their curse and their salvation. Rex and Rose Mary Walls had four children. In the beginning, they lived like nomads, moving among Southwest desert towns, camping in the mountains. Rex was a charismatic, brilliant man who, when sober, captured his children's imagination, teaching them physics, geology, and above all, how to embrace life fearlessly. Rose Mary, who painted and wrote and couldn't stand the responsibility of providing for her family, called herself an "excitement addict." Cooking a meal that would be consumed in fifteen minutes had no appeal when she could make a painting that might last forever.

    Later, when the money ran out, or the romance of the wandering life faded, the Walls retreated to the dismal West Virginia mining town -- and the family -- Rex Walls had done everything he could to escape. He drank. He stole the grocery money and disappeared for days. As the dysfunction of the family escalated, Jeannette and her brother and sisters had to fend for themselves, supporting one another as they weathered their parents' betrayals and, finally, found the resources and will to leave home.

    What is so astonishing about Jeannette Walls is not just that she had the guts and tenacity and intelligence to get out, but that she describes her parents with such deep affection and generosity. Hers is a story of triumph against all odds, but also a tender, moving tale of unconditional love in a family that despite its profound flaws gave her the fiery determination to carve out a successful life on her own terms.

    For two decades, Jeannette Walls hid her roots. Now she tells her own story. A regular contributor to, she lives in New York and Long Island and is married to the writer John Taylor. ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars True to Life Account
    I grew up in Welch, WV and was acquainted with Jeanette and Brian(Lori was older and Maureen was younger). I can attest that her harrowing account of growing up with an alcoholic father and mentally ill mother in the coalfields of WV was as she says. This was a compelling read, all the more so, because it was about people and places I knew so well. As I read, I was filled with sorrow and shame because I was one of those people who didn't want to have close association with them because they were so different from me. I try to asuage my guilt by telling myself I saw things from a child's maturity level. I wish I could apologize and find myself wondering what would have happened if I had befriended Jeanette. She could have enriched my like tremendously. For those of you who doubt things could not have happened like it was written, don't. I knew it and I saw it, and to a degree, lived it. And as tragic as it was, it was true.

    5-0 out of 5 stars WHAT A COURAGEOUS MEMOIR - - BRAVO!
    First, "The Glass Castle" is a real page turner - - I couldn't put it down and finished it in about four hours - - a record for me!

    It's probably the most thoughtful and sensitive memoir I can ever remember reading - - told with such grace, kindness and fabulous sense of humor.

    It's probably the best account ever written of a dysfunctional family -- and it must have taken Walls so much courage to put pen to paper and recount the details of her rather bizarre childhood - - which although it's like none other and is so dramatic - - any reader will relate to it. Readers will find bits and pieces of their own parents in Rex and Rose Mary Walls.

    Her journey across the country, ending up in a poor mining town in West Virginia and then finally in New York City, is a fascinating tale of survival.

    Her zest for life, even when eating margarine and sugar and bundled in a cardboard box with sweaters, coats and huddling with her pets, is unbelievably beautiful - - and motivating.

    If I could give a book ten stars, it would be "The Glass Castle."

    5-0 out of 5 stars Inferno to Paradiso (or close enough)
    Jeannette Wall's trek, as depicted in "Glass Castle", recalls Dante's
    journey through Hell and eventual ascenscion to Paradise. The comparison may seem risibly over-dramatic, but just as Dante had to go through the experience of the Netherworlds before he could be led to Heaven, so, too, is Jeannette's eventual triumph the FRUIT of a childhood filled with poverty and, what some would call, parental neglect or even abuse.

    In the opening section about Jeannette's early childhood, sort of the outer rungs of hell, we are introduced to the author's quirky family. Her father, Rex, is a brainy underachiever who cannot keep a job and has a bit of a "drinking situation".
    The mother is an eccentric artist who cannot be bothered too much
    by mundane tasks- you know, like cooking or cleaning the house. The children, all extremely bright, are often underfed and left to fend for themselves. However, if the parents have failings, they also have redeeming qualities. The children are immersed in an environment that values art, music, intellectual pursuits, freedom and self-sufficiency and spurns racism and all forms of bourgeois superficiality. Above all, the reader never doubts that Rex and his wife truly love the children. One gets the feeling throughout that Jeanette never doubts that either.
    In any case, the early years are bittersweet. If there is squalor and hunger there is also humor and magic. Most of all, there is hope. The family frequently moves and, although that is frustrating, it also provided the background for a myth: that the next town would provide prosperity.

    But then to Welch they did go! And, it is in this West Virginia town where her father grew up,the "Nation's Coal Bin", that Jeannette and the rest of the family descend into the lower regions of hell. All the problems are exacerbated. The father, having returned to the place he said he never would, drinks with abandon and applies more and more of the family's slim resources toward his habit. Jeanette resorts to scaveging trash barrels for sustenance and is humiliated for her tattered clothing. There is not water in the house for bathing and no heat in Winter. Swallowed by the appalachian mountains with only the two-lane US 52 out, you feel stuck. Even the pilgrim parents are unable to muster the strength to break the gravity of this place. With this immobility came the final destruction of the myth (that the family would move somewhere else and find prosperity) and, as a consequence, the destruction of hope. However, it is in this darkness that Jeannette finds her calling. She becomes a reporter for the "Maroon Wave", the Welch High School student newspaper. The rest of the book details how her dream to become a "high falutin" journalist led her to New York City and her current incarnation. Maybe not Paradiso, but close enough considering her formative years.

    A number of components conflate to push Jeannette towards a succeful resolution. Certainly the positive legacy of her parents: culture, books, self-sufficiency, etc. But also the dire situation gave her a sense of urgency and the focus that comes with it: She had nothing to lose. She was lucky enough to have discovered early on a career path and did not have the leisure to ruminate ENDLESSLY on it.. This latter often brings self-doubts that paralyze youth. Unlike so many memoirs about unhappy childhoods, the author never plays the John Bradshaw card by irately denouncing her parents, nor does she try to facilely excuse them. Life is more complex than that and she understand that syzygys cannot be tampered with, lest you destroy the whole. You cant take eggs out of the cake.

    On a personal note, I grew up in Welch, went to Welch High School and knew Jeannette (though not very well) who was two grades behind me. I have not seen her since High School. For those reviewers who expressed doubts about the authenticity of her story, I can tell you that at least the Welch part of the story rings true to my memory.

    5-0 out of 5 stars One for Your Reading List.
    I was grateful that the chapters are short in this disturbing memoir, because I could only take in a little at a time. It's difficult to imagine a more dysfunctional household than the one in which Walls grew up. What sets her book apart is the distinctive voice in which she narrates that dysfunction, and her growing awareness that she's entitled to a decent life.

    We meet the fiesty Jeannette as a toddler, badly burned while cooking hot dogs on a stove for herself. No, she wasn't defying her mother's orders. She was simply taking care of herself in a household where both parents thumbed their noses at such simple conventions as regular meals, sound shelter, decent clothing, running hot water and protection from sexual predators. On one thing, though, they didn't scrimp: the children were taught to read at an early age. I'm convinced that held the key to their survival. Thanks to public libraries, Jeannette read the entire Laura Ingalls Wilder prairie series before she entered school. It must have helped normalize the survivalist lifestyle that her parents adopted.

    The difference is that it wasn't necessary. Rex, her father, was when sober an accomplished electrician and science maven. Her mother, Rose Mary, had a college degree but found teaching, like motherhood, an imposition on her life as an artist. The three older children--Lori, Jeannette and Bryan--functioned as a family within the family. The youngest, Maureen, grew dependent on the kindess of strangers and eventually set out on her own.

    This is a uniquely American story that wanders all over the landscape from California and Arizona to West Virginia and New York. Although we see the cruelty with which these neglected chilidren are treated, we also see the people who help them and their own protection of their family. As Jeannette views it, the worst possible thing would be separation from her siblings, and I'm inclined to agree with her. Certainly, this book tests my assumption that children get their values from their parents. The Walls children formed theirs in opposition to their parents' in many ways, but they also managed to hang onto the dogged independence and sense of wonder that they admired in Mom and Dad.

    I hope this book will enter the list of child survival stories that in my mind includes Tobias Wolfe's "Duke of Deception" and Frank McCourt's "Angela's Ashes." Certainly I would recommend it for readers everywhere who are convinced they were deprived.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Venus Belongs to Walls
    "My parents, Rose Mary and Rex Walls, and their wedding day - 1956".

    There it is. A photo of a young couple, in love, flush with promise. The bride looking shy at the camera. The groom, square jawed and filled with good humor. It's stunning to think that this handsome, newly married couple, would live their lives in squalor, alcoholism and dreams. This picture is very much part of the story of Jeannette Walls and her family, as it sets the tone on the very first page of this wonderful, heartbreaking memoir.

    Jeannette's sisters Lori, Maureen and brother Brian, endured a childhood that could have been torn out of the history pages citing the Great Depression. It's hard to believe that these were the 1960's and 1970's in America. Starvation, bad hygiene, and lack of personal safety was an everyday habit in the Walls home - or homes - since they moved from town to town. The kid's upbringing was almost literally, either sink or swim. Much like the wind blown Joshua Tree they saw by the side of the road during one of their family "skadaddles", the kids grew against the force, became tough, and learned survivial despite the adversities.

    Both parents were incredibly bright and talented beings. Sadly, they had big schemes on which they could never follow through. Rex Walls was a mathematician who came from a squalor home in West Virginia, and Rose Mary was a prolific artist and teacher who was raised in an upper middle class family out west. What seemed to bond them was an adamant need to spurn the norms of society. This resulted in an inability to stay at the same job for long. They'd lose their homes, and inevitably shack up in their car or any broken down house they could find. This meant the children suffered. They'd constantly be uprooted, and taken out of school. With no money for everyday items, they'd find food and clothes in dumpsters. School children or other family members would abuse them, physically or sexually. Father, a raging drunk, drank up all the money they made. In one period of time, while living in a small home that could be described as a shack, the parents refused to lock their doors, which invited wanderers to come in and out during the night making the children open targets for various perversions.

    All long range plans they devined would either die out or be scratched, such as the building of a glass castle in which Rex had drawn up meticulous architectual plans. The aforementioned ramshackled home they lived in came with a backyard where Rex and his kids began to dig a hole for the foundation of this little palace. Sadly, the job was left abandoned. More of a ditch than a foundation, it was ultimately turned into their own landfill when they didn't have tax money for municiple garbage removal. It's quite a metaphor for their lives - dreams left abandoned for garbage. Yet, despite all the trouble and strife, one theme remains consistant: their love for each other was strong. The family, kids especially, stood by each other through all the bad times.

    The parents remained stubborn in clinging to poverty, deeming it poetic and noble, turning down any means of charity, even from their own children. For instance, when the kids had grown and found their way to Manhattan to start anew, the parents followed them, finding shelter in their cramped apartments. Despite the incessant pleas of their children to stay with them, they declined, opting to go it alone, ultimately setting up house in an abandoned building, embracing what we would call utter despair, as a one great big wonderful adventure.

    The stories unfold with a pure voice, no judgement or bitterness clouds Walls' telling of her family. Each horrible, enraging moment is given a morsel of wonder, such as Rex gazing up at the stars one Christmas, and giving Jeanette the planet Venus as a present since monetary gifts were impossible. In such a remembrance, and many others told between the frighening scenes, Walls makes it clear that her folks were free souls who shared their love in strange ways.

    This book will give you chills, and it will also make you think about homelessness and the unique stories these souls carry. Much praise should be given to Walls and her siblings, for having walked through fire, and coming out alive.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Courage to move forward....
    Jeannette Walls is familiar as a face and voice for Her husband is writer John Taylor. Her parents were non conventional and non-conforming, and she was often left to take care for herself.

    Through the book I kept looking for bitterness or residual shame just as the author often had to rummage for food in a dumpster but she is so contented and the book is her memoir of thriving and letting go of negative feelings. Her parents, Rex and Rose Mary Walls and their four children had a bizarre existence, but Jeanette is testament to survival and functional achievement regardless of what type of spoon you're born with in your mouth. The spoon in her mouth may have been plastic but she turned her life into gold.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great memoir
    The author describes her fascinating childhood in which her family moves around the country, following her father's dreams, staying ahead of law enforcement and bill collectors, and living the family's carefree attitude. While her father's dreams are what sustains the family for many years, slowly the four children become disillusioned as their father continually fails to provide all of the things he promises them. The father's inability to hold down a job and stay sober forces the family to live in destitution, and while the mother is continually writing and painting, this does not put food on the table. The four children learn to fend for themselves, take care of each other, and determine what is really important in their lives.

    Quote: "As Brian and I watched, the hole for the Glass Castle's foundation slowly filled with garbage."

    This was a really excellent memoir, which raised excellent questions about family, prioritization, dreams, reality, and the power of perseverance to overcome whatever challenges a person faces. The author relates her inner struggle when she wants desperately to believe in her father's big dreams, while having to scrounge in trash cans to find enough food. Although it was a bit slow in the beginning, things picked up rapidly. The book moved quickly, particularly because it is organized into short chapters. I thought the most significant portions related to the siblings holding together while they were growing up and making the most of difficult circumstances.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Memoir
    When your children complain about how they suffered, don't rely: just give them a copy of this book and tell them to come and see you when they're finished. Jeannette Walls tells her story of a childhood spent being dragged around the country as her father does the "skedaddle" to avoid creditors and while her mother refuses to face his contining slide into alcoholism and the family's ever descending circumstances. The children understand that they are living at the bottom of the food chain, often living with no heat or indoor plumbing, but are powerless to change things until one by one they graduate from high school and simply leave. This book is an absolute must read. One of my top ten of 2005. Beautifully written and compelling.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Overcoming Skedaddle
    Perhaps it was a fierce intelligence that lifted Jeannette Walls out of the well of despair into which her "parents" were forever dipping her (an apt metaphor considering her first swimming lesson). I put quotes around the word parents in the last sentence because, in this riveting memoir, it is the children who do the actual parenting. Young Jeannette, eager to get to school in the morning, would frst have to drag her mother out of bed and send her off to school as well. Mom, you see, was a teacher -- a teacher who didn't care to go to work, even if it meant that her children would not eat for days on end. She was, she said, an artist. When confronted, Mom would whine, suggesting her young children find work themselves. Almost immediately, they do. Jeannette, especially, displays an unerring ambition, and the reader wants to applaud as we see her turning toward a full belief in her abilities as both parent to her parents and then as a writer, which she understands immediately will be her ticket to respectability and, possibly, riches.

    During the book (I couldn't put it down for a minute), there were several times I wanted to slap both parents, intensely feeling the pure disgust the children had to hide. I imagine fear of the unknown, of being taken away and put into foster homes, made hiding that disgust imperative. Coming clean here, however, Ms. Walls brilliantly succeeds in illuminating that which makes her father and mother quite special, apart from the normal loyalty blindly afforded one's family. Both parents are obviously bright, though lacking even a glimmer of responsibility. It is clear that the children have inherited this intelligence but . . . will they survive on this alone? Can they? Every setback becomes an invitation for Dad to climb back into the bottle and for Mom, obssessed with observing and recording the world around her, to be guilted into returning to teaching, a job she hates . . . Because it's a job. The most heart-wrenching part of this book for me was, oddly enough, a scene where a young Jeannette, possessing only two pair of threadbare pants, colors her skin with matching magic markers to simulate the "patches" the family could not afford. We are talking bone-crushing poverty here. A passage where her father takes her to a bar and uses his young daughter as bait for a man he intends to beat at pool -- allowing the man to take the young girl upstairs after he's fleeced him out of $80, placed Dad beyond the pale of redemption for me. And I kept waiting for Jeannette to feel the same way. Being a streetsmart survivor who can handle anyting isn't enough. This is a child we're talking about. It's one horror after another. Yet, through the tenacity of the children and the creativity of their parents, we know they will somehow be all right. In fact, we already know at the beginning that Jeannette will do well for herself in life. This fact, however, does not stop us from rooting for these kids the whole way, binding the reader to them as they slowly break from those who would betray them, while still loving them, and find their own adult lives elsewhere (New York City), where we know they can do nothing but improve their lives.

    One after another, Jeannette and her siblings move to Manhattan and, through hard work, immediately attain a measure of the domestic security that was denied them from the time they were born. Jeannette, in a section that reads almost as if she is embarrassed to be recognized for her talent and intelligence, receives an Ivy League scholarship and advances quickly in Manhattan, eventually chronicling the social lives of the rich and famous from her Park Avenue apartment. Park Avenue! What a transition from the damp, moldy confines of a broken down up-hollow shack in West Virginia.

    However, Mom and Dad miss the comfort of child labor. Having only themselves to rely upon has apparently caused them to realize their limitations and dependence upon their own children. They do not intend to let their little breadwinners get fully away from them.

    These characters are indelible. I did not want the book to end. In fact, I found the ending rather abrupt with several unanswered questions. What becomes of the fragile Maureen? What becomes of the land in Texas? Overall, though, this memoir is a rich, satisfying read and a testament to the spirit people like Jeannette Walls and her siblings use to somehow elevate themselves above the dark side of their heritage. Going along for the ride, we find ourselves elevated as well.
    ... Read more

    5. What to Expect When You're Expecting: 4th Edition
    by Heidi Murkoff, Sharon Mazel
    list price: $14.95 -- our price: $8.97
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0761148574
    Publisher: Workman Publishing Company
    Sales Rank: 270
    Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Announcing a brand new, cover-to-cover revision of America's pregnancy bible. What to Expect When You're Expecting is a perennial New York Times bestseller and one of USA Today's 25 most influential books of the past 25 years. It's read by more than 90% of pregnant women who read a pregnancy book—the most iconic, must-have book for parents-to-be, with over 14.5 million copies in print.

    Now comes the Fourth Edition, a new book for a new generation of expectant moms—featuring a new look, a fresh perspective, and a friendlier-than-ever voice. It's filled with the most up-to-date information reflecting not only what's new in pregnancy, but what's relevant to pregnant women. Heidi Murkoff has rewritten every section of the book, answering dozens of new questions and including loads of new asked-for material, such as a detailed week-by-week fetal development section in each of the monthly chapters, an expanded chapter on pre-conception, and a brand new one on carrying multiples. More comprehensive, reassuring, and empathetic than ever, the Fourth Edition incorporates the most recent developments in obstetrics and addresses the most current lifestyle trends (from tattooing and belly piercing to Botox and aromatherapy). There's more than ever on pregnancy matters practical (including an expanded section on workplace concerns), physical (with more symptoms, more solutions), emotional (more advice on riding the mood roller coaster), nutritional (from low-carb to vegan, from junk food–dependent to caffeine-addicted), and sexual (what's hot and what's not in pregnant lovemaking), as well as much more support for that very important partner in parenting, the dad-to-be.

    Overflowing with tips, helpful hints, and humor (a pregnant woman's best friend), this new edition is more accessible and easier to use than ever before. It's everything parents-to-be have come to expect from What to Expect...only better?.
    ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars The cute-ification of the writing upstages the value of the book, February 7, 2010
    Pregnancy is an exciting time and it's good to have fun with it, but the 4th edition takes the most simple descriptions and turns them into terms 15 year olds use. Sperm is routinely referred to as "the guys", and the following is taken from page 8, "Knowing when the Big O (ovulation) occurs is key when doing the Baby Dance (aka trying to conceive). Here are a few ways to help you pin down the big day--and pin each other down for baby-making activities."
    I will only use this until my new pregnancy book arrives at which point this is going to a book drive.

    1-0 out of 5 stars so condescending!, March 21, 2009
    This book assumes that pregnant women are idiots, and talks to them accordingly. It's full of cutsey language, puns, and linguistic tics that drove this English major up a wall. In terms of content, it contributes to our culture's position of "better safe than sorry" when it comes to kids - kids and pregnant women must be protected from anything and everything that might be the slightest bit upsetting. It does not provide any information on the research behind their advice, assuming that the pregnant woman is too stupid or lacking in self-control to make an informed decision for herself upon being presented with the facts, relying instead on making across the board recommendations on all kinds of things for which there is no scientific basis. I also hated that the miscarriage section had a big disclaimer warning pregnant women not to read it unless they actually had had a miscarriage, because the knowledge alone that miscarriage could happen would be so emotionally devastating to her that she couldn't handle it. After doing some research on my own and finding out how inaccurate and unnecessary many of their claims are, I find I no longer trust the book at all. I would not recommend it.

    1-0 out of 5 stars As per our Midwife's advice: Throw it away... now!, July 21, 2010
    This book is the worst book any newly pregnant woman can read. It is fear based to a degree that makes you wonder if Murkoff is intending to help you or to avoid a lawsuit. According to the book you are cursed if you do and if you don't. Diets are impossible to follow, and practically everything from green tea to vitamins can cause a birth defect. In terms of literary value, this book is filled with annoying and condescending cliches. Sadly, it becomes evident through the content that Heidi Murkoff has no formal training in these matters.

    I followed my midwife's advice and decided to throw it away. Please, do not give it to your girlfriends as a gift. It may say that is the pregnancy bible, but it is in fact a misinformed alarming guide to complete freak out. My anxieties indeed stopped when I got rid of this book.

    I would suggest "Pregnancy, Childbirth, and the Newborn: The Complete Guide," by Penny Simkin. It is written by actual professionals in the field.

    btw, I'm using my husband's account. This review comes from a pregnant woman :)

    1-0 out of 5 stars To All the Expecting Fathers ..., May 31, 2008
    Guys ... consider this a warning; this will be the worst book that your significant other can read and will make your life utterly miserable for the next nine months. It's been over four years since I had to deal with this serie's 3rd edition and I still can't stand the sight of it.

    It may have been intended as a self-help guide, but its alarmist tone and condescending attitude leads this to act more as a bible for every worst-case scenario imaginable. After spending a few hours perusing this book's contents, your wife, girlfriend, whomever will become so overworked and paranoid that every little ache, pain, and irritation will become a sign of the baby being born with a forked tongue and three heads. The diet your partner will be instructed to keep is impossible for any human being alive to follow. She will be told to try and avoid ... damn near everything it seems like.

    I was also incensed that after reading up on the author, all of this "wonderful" information was being brought to me by someone with NO MEDICAL BACKGROUND. If I'm going to want advice on dealing with pregnancy issues, wouldn't I want to consult an expert (i.e. someone with a degree)? Murkoff is no more an expert then I am ...

    I'll be blunt, WTEWYE seems to be an EXTREMELY popular gift for someone who's pregnant for the first time and it's probably unavoidable. I came into three copies without any effort at all. I'm not going to stand here and pretend I know of a better source for information either, because (outside of ... oh I don't know ... a doctor) I don't. All I know is that if THIS is the definitive volume on the pregnancy experience, then God help us all.

    I absolutely guarantee you, someone your partner knows WILL buy this for her. Your mission is to "lose it." If you're already stuck with it and you can't hide it or burn it, at least do your best to temper its pages with as much perspective as you possibly can. Again, for a first-time mom-to-be, who, frankly, is probably a bit nervous anyway about all the changes her body is going through, all this volume is going to accomplish is completely freaking her out.

    Batten down the hatches and break out the antacid my friends, it's gonna be a long nine months

    1-0 out of 5 stars Dry, bland, and uninformative, June 4, 2008
    Unfortunately, this book wasn't really what I expected. If you are looking to be scared by you pregnancy, than I suggest this book to you. However, the offensive and judgmental tone of this book will do you no good. Try something else that won't make you feel bad while you read it.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The classic guide to pregnancy., April 16, 2009
    A MUST have: If you are looking for a thorough pregnancy book, this has to be it. When I got it from my doctor (he gives one out to each new, expectant mom) I was suprised at how big it was. Wow! A lot of reading material. However, this one covers just about everything you want to know about pregnacny and then some. There was also some stuff in here that I particularily didn't want to know!! However, it's a good, solid read and one of the best. A classic. I also liked Really Pregnant! Confessions of a New Mom-To-Be or Why I Couldn't Stop Eating Brownies.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Not "alarmist" or "fear-mongering.", December 14, 2009
    Luckily I purchased this book before reading the reviews. The reviewers that gave this book a poor rating, claiming it is "alarmist" and "fear-mongering," are using exactly the kind of hyperbolic language they accuse the authors of using. I am normally overly self-aware and concerned about every little pain or abnormal feeling I have; if anything, the book's month-to-month description of possible symptoms and conditions helped reassure me that all the things I went through were normal and easily explained. It made for a convenient reference to further research things that were pertinent to my situation. I didn't find the book frightening or agenda-pushing at all. In fact, I thought it was much less concerning than the book that the doctor's office gave me.

    The section on birthing options seemed fairly diverse to me. It did not condone using medications or seem to favor hospital birthing in any way. It encourages you at around 7 months to start thinking about and preparing your birthing plan so you can make sure it is carried out in the way you want it to be.

    There is a whole section, at the back of the book, SEPARATE from the month to month sections, which covers the various conditions that can potentially complicate pregnancies. I think this section is more for mothers who are pre-disposed to these conditions or have already been diagnosed with them. The book in no way made me feel like I was at risk for any and all complications or that I had to sleep with all eyes and ears open. I myself have been at-risk with a short cervix so I found that section, and the section on the signs of preterm labor, to be helpful, informative, and unbiased.

    The best and first place you ought to go with a pregnancy concern is of course your doctor or midwife. But if you'd like some handy and concise information on the kinds of things you MAY encounter month-to-month, why these things happen, and some possible ways to deal with them, then this is a fine book. I did not find the tone threatening, condescending, or heavily prescriptive by any means. I'm not sure why anyone would give it one star.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Really unhelpful and alarmist, August 5, 2008
    This book offers only one version of pregnancy and childbirth - a managed, highly medicalized version. Which is totally fine if this is what you want, but this book doesn't present it as, "Well, you have this option or this option." It is straight away one version of high-drama childbirth that totally discounts the ability of most women to have a healthy, normal birth and healthy normal baby. Granted, all birth books seem to have a slant, but why not err on the side of what is healthiest for mom and baby? Sure, if you feel like you cannot birth without drugs or you don't care about having an episiotomy, this is fine and good, but lots of people find that when they are not scared into these procedures, and scared by birth in general, things tend to go more easily. The Sears pregnancy and birth books acknowledge the need/option for fetal monitoring, ultra-sounds, c-sections, drugs, etc., but at least give you the information about them rather than assuming that they are routine and 100% without risk. More on the alternative side is Having a Baby, Naturally: The Mothering Magazine Guide to Pregnancy and Childbirth, but even if you don't end up going that route, everything in the book is well documented by studies, so it is a great source of information. I'm not trying to be harsh on this book, but it really stinks at giving a balanced, comprehensive view of your options, or of portraying birth as a natural, normal process. Try to avoid it if you can - it just makes you feel more nervous and stressed.

    1-0 out of 5 stars scary!, July 23, 2009
    DON'T READ THIS WHEN YOU'RE EXPECTING!!!!!!! This book will only serve to scare you! Try "Pregnancy, Childbirth and the Newborn: the Complete Guide" by Simkin, Whalley & Keppler instead.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Read this if you like having meltdowns, November 7, 2008
    To make a long story short, after getting about 120 pages into this book, I called my best friend nearly in tears. I told her I was reading the book, and before I could go into details, she said "oh for goodness sakes, don't read THAT! It's all about what you can't do and what can go wrong."

    Turns out that three other friends of mine echoed the same sentiments with no prompting.

    This book is a great way to make a (probably already nauseous) pregnant woman even more miserable. ... Read more

    6. Deceptively Delicious: Simple Secrets to Get Your Kids Eating Good Food
    by Jessica Seinfeld
    list price: $12.95 -- our price: $7.49
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 006176793X
    Publisher: William Morrow
    Sales Rank: 420
    Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    It has become common knowledge that childhood obesity rates are increasing every year. But the rates continue to rise. And between busy work schedules and the inconvenient truth that kids simply refuse to eat vegetables and other healthy foods, how can average parents ensure their kids are getting the proper nutrition and avoiding bad eating habits?

    As a mother of three, Jessica Seinfeld can speak for all parents who struggle to feed their kids right and deal nightly with dinnertime fiascos. As she wages a personal war against sugars, packaged foods, and other nutritional saboteurs, she offers appetizing alternatives for parents who find themselves succumbing to the fastest and easiest (and least healthy) choices available to them. Her modus operandi? Her book is filled with traditional recipes that kids love, except they're stealthily packed with veggies hidden in them so kids don't even know! With the help of a nutritionist and a professional chef, Seinfeld has developed a month's worth of meals for kids of all ages that includes, for example, pureed cauliflower in mac and cheese, and kale in spaghetti and meatballs. She also provides revealing and humorous personal anecdotes, tear–out shopping guides to help parents zoom through the supermarket, and tips on how to deal with the kid that "must have" the latest sugar bomb cereal.

    But this book also contains much more than recipes and tips. By solving problems on a practical level for parents, Seinfeld addresses the big picture issues that surround childhood obesity and its long–term (and ruinous) effects on the body. With the help of a prominent nutritionist, her book provides parents with an arsenal of information related to kids' nutrition so parents understand why it's important to throw in a little avocado puree into their quesadillas. She discusses the critical importance of portion size, and the specific elements kids simply must have (as opposed to adults) in order to flourish now and in the future: protein, calcium, vitamins, and Omega 3 and 6 fats.

    Jessica Seinfeld's book is practical, easy–to–read, and a godsend for any parent that wants their kids to be healthy for a long time to come.

    ... Read more


    4-0 out of 5 stars Let's Compare: "Deceptive" Vs. "Sneaky", February 8, 2008
    Deceptively Delicious VS.The Sneaky Chef

    First of all let me start by saying:
    !) I don't have young kids any more BUT
    2) I HATE veggies but I know I need to eat more of them, so any system that gets them into me and the grownups in my life: BRAVO!

    Yes, I'd recommend BOTH books and here's why. They each have their strong and weak suits.

    A) pictures, which is helpful and fun
    B) tips and comments by her taste-testers
    C) used one type of puree for each recipe
    D) is spiral bound so it will lay flat. The whole layout is really nice, just as a cookbook to read!
    E) doesn't beat you over the head with the whole nutrition thing

    A) combination purees, which add a lot of variety and ease into the cooking part
    B0 really cute names for the dishes. Makes it easy to remember!
    C) isn't afraid to use butter and milk!
    D) goes seriously into the nutrition thing. Almost the first half of the book is a prelim and explanation of the whole concept.
    E) the recipes seem to taste a bit better!

    DD. The recipes are a bit bland. If you're cooking for an adult palate, you need to add more spices. For example her "Chocolate Chip Cupcakes." I suggest substituting milk (even skim) for the water, add an extra T. vanilla and 1-2 teaspoons of cinnamon. One of the veggie purees her recipes call for aren't covered in the "how to prepare puree" part.

    SC: Very few pictures. It's not spiral bound but a trip to Office Max can take care of that for you. (Best tip I ever got regarding cookbooks by the way and found it here!) It's a bit "textbook" like. I get the whole nutrition thing already.

    I wish both books went into greater detail about the pureeing part. They're pretty good but if you're not a veggie person to begin with, you might not know what is the proper consistency.

    I understand that Missy (The Sneaky Chef author) is writing a cookbook for adult with hidden veggies and I hope Jessica will do the same!

    3-0 out of 5 stars Hmmmm..I thought this was going to be easier!, October 16, 2007
    I also was so excited for this cookbook to arrive. I immediately rushed to the grocery store to get $50.00 worth of vegetables and other baking ingredients.

    My first attempt was the brownies, and my victims were all adults. The look on their faces was priceless. Not so good because of the very weird texture to them.

    Next, eggs with cauliflower for my 3 year old. Hmmm, he was wondering whey the eggs that have always been yellow, have now turned white. Add a little cheddar, and bam, they are yellow again.

    The blueberry cupakces with cream cheese filling, total disaster. They looked horrible, and tasted even worse. I didn't even attempt to try to get anyone in the house to eat them would have thought I was feeding my husband horse meat. They were NASTY! Very slimy with a funky aftertase.

    What I learned is that you don't need this cookbook for recipes. Puree some veggies and slip them in the everyday food you make. Don't go overboard, and chances are your kids won't know the difference!

    4-0 out of 5 stars Nice recipes but lots of prep time, October 20, 2007
    After seeing this on Oprah, my child and I decided to buy it. My child is one who actually eats and enjoys vegetables but we were both intrigued by the idea of incorporating extra vegetables into our diets.

    The book is well-organized, offers detailed information about both the recipes and the benefits of the major ingredients, and I really like that the tone is not a "lecture" on the benefits of vegetables. She doesn't talk down to the reader but offers lots of helpful suggestions.

    I do have one suggestion for busy parents - use organic baby food. I don't have a food processor and I don't have a dedicated block of time to clean, cook and prepare all the purees for the week. For about $.65 (or less) per jar, I can have 1/2 cup of organic winter squash etc. that has already been cleaned, cooked and pureed for me. Plus, it will keep on the shelf until I need it so I can buy extra when they go on sale.

    Furthermore, I have started adding the purees to the recipes or boxed mixes I already use. I added 1/2 cup of mixed vegetables to a batch of Pamela's gluten-free brownie mix tonight and it was delicious. There was no noticeable change in texture and we could not taste anything but rich chocolate.

    Don't be afraid to experiment :)

    5-0 out of 5 stars This book is the BEST!!!, October 13, 2007
    Well let me begin by saying that I am not a professional chef, nor I am an uber-fan of the "Seinfeld" show - so I could care less who the author is. I also had a feeling that anything that deals with food and children and not being 100% honest with kids in this "kid-centered" world we live in would push a few buttons. And it did! I am a married mom of two boys and I am also interested in better health for my family. I do believe in eating fruits and vegetables in their natural state but let's be honest: Who among us eats five servings a day? I saw Ms. Seinfeld on Oprah and thought to myself, Well I have beeing doing the puree thing myself so let's see what she has to say. How are thre recipes? Pretty good, as a matter of fact. Here is what I did to try some of the recipes out:
    First, I plugged my Bob Seger CD and got the ball rolling. The Beatles work just as well, the decision is yours. Then I washed my hands, put on my "Lutheran Jello Power" apron and said to myself: "It's Go Time!" I own a Vita-Mix blender which double as a food processor. I own a rice cooker which can be used to stream veggies. If you do not own a food processor or a steamer, do not despair. You can bake a lot of the veggies or put a colander in a shallow pan of boiling water to steam them. You can always invest in a steamer and/or food processor if you want, later. The first recipe I tries was:
    CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES: 5 star.They are delicious! The only tweaking I did to the recipe was I pureed the chickpeas before adding them to the batter. I also used brown sugar Splenda rather than regular brown sugar; when done you have a batch of cookies that have 1/2 cup of brown sugar plus protein in them!! There is no white sugar in this recipe and I also used whole wheat flour. Excellent!! I have actually made these twice in a week.
    SPAGETTI AND MEATBALLS: 5 stars. My kids are not that into meatballs and they ate them. This was my first attempt at meatballs, ever, and they turned out great. I put the broccoli puree and the sweet potato puree in the spagetti sauce and no one tasted anything different.
    CHOCOLATE PUDDING: 5 stars. I put the avocado puree in this and believe it or not my two sons complained that is was "too much chocolate tasting!" The pudding was that good.
    MACARONI AND CHEESE: 5 stars. I tried putting the sweet potato puree in with a box mix and there was no taste difference. I mixed the puree withe the milk and you could taste the puree. The kids actually said it tasted better than before!!
    FROZEN YOGURT POPS: 5 stars. Very good, very sweet. I do not own popsicle molds so I used those multi-color cups from toddler days (my kids are 8 & 10 yrs old) and although they worked great - I bought popsicle sticks from a craft store - next time I am going to use smaller dixie cups so the portions are smaller.
    The recipes are mistake proof as well; I put avocado puree rather than the brocolli puree in pizza sauce to make pizza burgers (Jessica says to label your bags, guess now I know why) but it still tasted good. It actually made them taste a bit sweeter, like I had put banana peppers in the recipe as well.
    One error I made was when I was done with the puree was I put all the puree in one large Zip-lock bag. Follow Jessica's advice and use smaller bags so you can pull out just how much you need. I pureed the following veggies the first day: Summer squash, broccoli, cauliflower, beets, carrots, avocados, spinach, zucchini and sweet potatoes. I bought a bag of frozen blueberries. I am little type A but I wanted all the puree to be available so I could try as many recipes as possible. If you want to try a recipe or two but don't own all the equipment (especially a food processor, which if you are going to do this long term you will need) try the sweet potato recipes. You can bake a sweet potato and mash it up with a fork and some water. And one sweet potato goes a very long way. I used three and I have enought puree to feed a day care. For a week. The avocado would be another one to try without all the equipment, as it is easily mashed with a fork and some water. The borcolli and caulifower recipes will require a food processor as they are tougher vegetables to mash, even in a steamed state.
    There has been much discussion about another book that was published last spring and "competition" with this book. Well I am no expert but there is no way that this book could have been put together and published in six months. Why can't both books be on the market? I am sure both authors want the same thing: Better diets for us all. I have ordered the other cookbook as well, there is room for both on my shelf.
    As for the argument that we are lying to our kids: Big whoop-de-doo. I have eaten more sweet potatoes, brocolli, califlower, carrots, etc. in the past week that I have in the past six months. Do I present veggies in their natural state? Yes. Do my kids always eat them? No. But at least they are presented and I know they are still eating them in the puree. Mealtimes should be about talking and sharing, not arguing over food. My younger son likes to help with cooking and baking and he knows the purees are in there and he could care less, as long as can still eat. I highly recommend this cookbook and as soon as I receive the other cookbook I will write a review of that book as well. This book, to me, is a great teaching tool about nutrition. My kids and I have gone through the recipes together and discussed which ones we want to try. Do my kids eat cake and ice cream? Of course, just not every day. We talk about nutrition in a matter of fact way: These are the things to make your body grow. Period. No arguing, no crying, no bribing. I am sort of like Dragnet that way: "Just the facts, ma'am!"
    I also want to edit my review to add that I could not help notice that all the one star and rwo star reviews are very critical of the author's personal life. I sincerely hope that folks can see through such attempts at being critical of the author because she is once divorced and is now married to a celebrity. It is sad that such personal attacks are listed in what should be a simple book review.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Deceptively not so good..., November 15, 2007
    Quesadillas- The flavor wasn't too bad if you dipped in Salsa otherwise you can taste the squash and it doesn't come out crip it comes out pretty mushy.
    Chicken nuggets- The breading doesn't get very crisp, the breading falls off when cooking and if you use brocolli the nuggest have a green look to them.
    Chocolate cake with beats was good. Chick pea chocolate chip cookies were good the first 2 days. After that the chickpeas got so hard you couldn't chew them.
    Brownies are spongy.
    Grilled cheese you can taste the veggies and it is pretty mushy tasting
    Egg Puffs were just gross
    French toast isn't too bad, but my kids won't eat it
    Chicken soup I didn't care for, but my son's did eat it.

    Overall the recipes don't taste that bad, but the texture wasn't that good. I have one son who isn't a fussy eater at all and he wouldn't eat these recipes. Normally he eats anything you give him. Actually I think I made a mistake feeding him food from this cookbook because now he is a fussy eater when he never was before. Now my other son who is always fussy and we can't get him to eat much of anything wouldn't eat these either. He was the reason I bought the book, but he won't have anything to do with the food. He even likes cookies, cakes etc, they are his favorite. He didn't like the cookies. He did eat the cake and that was about it. I would say don't buy it. In fact I think I am going to have to sell my book. It was a waste of money for me.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Brownies Taste Deceptively... Green Waste-ish..., January 3, 2008
    My wife picked up this book in the hope of fooling our kids into eating more vegetables. She tried the inexplicable chocolate-spinach brownie, but the recipe failed for the following reasons:

    1. The brownie texture was wrong. The surface of the brownie forms a shiny, mucousy layer that looks a bit like Freddie Kruger's skin in the "Nightmare on Elm Street" series.
    2. While I had long been of the opinion that nearly anything can be made to taste good as long as it is smothered with enough chocolate, I am sad to find that I have been wrong in this belief. While the brownie looks like it should taste good, it has a strange metallic flavor. My mom thought it tasted like we had put some kind of fruit in it, while I thought it tasted like a tray of brownies that had been stored alongside some rotting vegetables.

    The sad thing is that the overall idea is pretty good. Try replacing the spinach with zucchini, which already has a solid track record as a dessert ingredient.

    Meanwhile, I'm off to cleanse my palette.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Recipes may work for those with very young children, however..., November 15, 2007
    As a dietitian I am always looking for good resources for my clients. I bought this book hoping to find some tasty recipes for both clients and my own family. While I can see how some of these recipes may work for very young, undeveloped palates, they certainly did not work with my children who are 6 yrs and older, nor did my husband and I find them tasty. I have made several recipes over the past few days and the only ones that we found edible were the macaroni and cheese (edible but not well-liked) and the bolognese sauce. The tofu nugget recipe simply did not work and the coffee cake (marshmallows and butternut squash??) was terrible. While the premise of adding pureed vegetables to recipes is logical (and has been done before many times) in some of the recipes it seems that they are added for no reason. The bolognese sauce already has tomatoes, carrots and onions- is pureed sweet potato really neccessary? Additionally, is it in our child's best interest to "hide" healthy food in foods that are traditionally not "healthy" (cookies, cakes, etc) rather than educate them and introduce them to the whole food as part of a normal diet? Once a child is able to distinguish tastes, it is important for them to understand where they are coming from in their natural state so they have some idea of where their food comes from (spinach is not naturally found in chocolate brownies!) The recipes did not make enough to feed a family with big boys (and I do not mean teenagers- 10 yr old boys can eat quite a bit too.) Clearly this is more of a baby through toddler type book of recipes for those just starting off in the food-introduction process! Not food I would serve to adults!

    3-0 out of 5 stars The reviews, the recipes, the nutrition factor and Oprah., October 16, 2007
    A couple of thoughts on this book, its reviews, the recipes, the nutrition factor, & Oprah.

    - First, re the reviews that are here - it seems that no one can post a negative review without immediately being shot down - this really makes me believe that the reviews are being monitored by interested parties in the book's success - perhaps, publisher, family & friends? If you note the first few reviews of the book, they were all made by members of Jessica's family, so they're here and active.

    Second, re the recipes - I've made a few of them, and some work and some don't. The burgers have *way* too much garlic - maybe to overpower the cauliflower? The mashed potatoes are good and, on my own I put some cauliflower puree into some frozen spinach, and I ended up not needing to add any cream to jazz it up - it just worked. So, as a jumping off point, the purees are inspirational to incorporate into your own existing recipes - these recipes on their own, are a little touch and go, but overall the concept is brilliant - even though Jessica cannot be credited with having the idea first, as seen by the description of The Sneaky Chef, published previously.

    Re the nutrition factor - this is becoming a sticky point as people bring up the question of why nutritional content was not included, especially considering that the foreward is written by a nutritionist. I think I can guess why - a 1/2 cup of spinach puree in a batch of brownies or 1/2 cup of cauliflower in a pot of mashed potatoes does not go a long way once you divide that up into individual servings. There is no way anyone is getting a full serving of vegetables from this technique, but I tend to be in the camp that thinks more veggies is better than less, even if the more is negligible. And, it may be even less than negligible considering the additional cooking beyond the steaming that is robbing the veggies of their enzymes.

    Finally, re Oprah. I watched yesterday as Jerry came on to promote his new Bee Movie, that Oprah happens to be in. I realized this is why she had Jessica on in the first place and say, not the Sneaky Chef. There's definitely a bit of cronyism going on. And, was telling when Oprah groused about the book being number one on the bestseller list that Jerry thanked everone for contributing to "Seinfeld World Media".

    All in all, I have no regrets about buying the book, and I'm sure I'll be doing purees from here on out.

    1-0 out of 5 stars So disappointed by these recipes, December 15, 2007
    I was so excited when I heard about this book, I ran out and got it, as did a couple of other fellow moms I know. We are all so incredibly disappointed with the recipes. I made the chocolate cake with beets, and it was so disgusting, it didn't taste like anything, I can't imagine anyone liking it, I had to throw almost the whole thing away because no one would eat it. The textures are all wrong, the scrambled eggs with cauliflower are so watery, the chicken nuggets are not crispy, but mushy, and you can see the green specs in them.
    It's a great idea, but it's definitely overhyped, I wish these recipes had worked for us but they were a total disappointment. I'm off to EBay my copy.

    3-0 out of 5 stars If you want to hide the veggies, this is a very good cookbook, October 31, 2007
    I checked this out of the library and made several of the recipes over the week. My kids are between 12 and 5 and are like most kids when it comes to likes and dislikes of food. The recipes met with mixed reviews, but not because they knew what the ingredients were; I didn't even tell my husband.
    For the time and effort I'll stick with what has worked in the past; presenting lots of fruits and vegetables, in all forms, to see what works and what they like.
    I have had great success with recipes by Annabel Karmel who focuses on "fun" healthy food and also with Susan Branch's vegetable recipes because they are so simple.
    Despite the time involved I'll stick to making radish flowers and celery brooms, low-fat dips and fun shapes with any vegetable that will submit to a cookie cutter (cucumbers, squash and peppers work best).
    While many of the recipes are interesting and are worth making, in the end I want my kids to like a vegetable when they see it, not view it as a subversive enemy.
    As for the controversy between the two's just stupid. This idea is not a new one (there was a woman on the Today show a couple of years ago who was suggesting we make brownies with mashed up black beans for more fiber) and there will be more that follow. ... Read more

    7. Top 100 Baby Purees: 100 Quick and Easy Meals for a Healthy and Happy Baby
    by Annabel Karmel
    list price: $16.00 -- our price: $7.89
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0743289579
    Publisher: Atria
    Sales Rank: 320
    Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Babies grow more rapidly in their first year than at any other time in their lives, so how you feed your newborn will be one of the most important decisions you make for your new baby.

    Making your own baby food is not only more economical than buying commercial brands, it also assures that your child consumes only the freshest, top-quality ingredients. British television personality and children's nutrition expert Annabel Karmel's essential collection of best-ever purees grants new parents their wish: one hundred quick and easy recipes that will make for a healthy and happy baby. From first tastes and weaning, right through to meals for older babies, all the recipes are suitable for children aged six months and older. And with all these fruit and vegetable favorites, and innovative fish, meat, and chicken purees, the dishes are so tasty you will want to eat them yourself!

    In addition to easy and delicious recipes, Top 100 Baby Purees also includes information on:

    • Weaning your baby and transitioning to solid foods
    • Food allergies
    • Time-saving food preparation tips
    • Freezing and reheating your homemade baby food
    • Tricks on finding the hidden nutrition in everyday foods

    Featuring a preface by Dr. Michel Cohen, New York pediatrician and author of The New Basics: A-to-Z Baby & Child Care for the Modern Parent ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Resource, Wonderful Recipes, But Be Careful, December 29, 2006
    I am so glad I bought this book; it agrees with my philosophy about shaping children's palates early, using whole foods, and organic eating in general. The recipes are easy and delicious, and give you ideas for all the way into toddlerhood. I love the inclusion of recipes using meat, fish, and chicken. My daughter has loved everything I have made from this book so far; my husband and I have even eaten a few- with salt and seasoning added for adult taste- and enjoyed them.

    I do, however, agree with Lynn W.- USE WISDOM with certain recipes, since the author does not seem to follow the AAP's recommendations about when to introduce certain foods, and seems to lack a current understanding about food allergies in children. There are lots of recipes with cow's milk, tomatoes, and citrus, for example, for very young babies.

    Otherwise, I highly recommend this book as an excellent resource.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Not what I was looking for...but I'm still glad I ordered it!, July 3, 2006
    My daughter is turning eight months this week. She is not eating textured foods yet or finger foods, but she is getting bored with one-ingredient foods and bland food like just sweet potatoes by themselves, so I'm starting to make her some varied purees with different ingredients and spices. Hence, why I ordered this book!

    What I was expecting to find was exactly what the title said...100 puree recipes. Not a book divided into ages with age-appropriate recipes. The first section tells you how to steam and puree vegetables and fruits. Then moves on to 6 month old foods, and then 7-9 month foods and then 9-12 month recipes which aren't even purees. They look more like recipes I would make for my husband and I, not that it's a bad thing at all, because we want her eating what we're eating in a few months!

    I'm not returning the book, because some of the recipes look awesome and I can't wait to try them, but it's not what I was looking for at all when I ordered it. It really should be retitled to something other than Top 100 Baby Purees when that's not really what it is.

    But the BEST part of this book that is so different than other books is that it has some great puree recipes for chicken and beef and fish, and I haven't been able to find that anywhere else. And the recipes call for onion and garlic, which are two ingredients that my husband cook a lot with, so it's going to be a good cookbook for us. So, three stars for the quality of the book and the ease of the recipes which I can tell already by reading them since I'm an experienced cook, but a two star deduction for the bad title.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Good Book, Great Food, February 1, 2007
    I bought this book looking for homemade baby food recipes and got so much more. Besides having lots of tasty recipes for each stage of your baby's development it provides valuable nutritional iformation. Each recipe is easy to follow and easy to make. The best part is that they actually taste good! I usually spend 3-4 hours over 2 days to make enough baby food to last a month. A tip, pick a few recipes that use similar ingredients and as Rachel Ray says, "Use it twice, chop it once."

    To make my life easier most recipes are suitable to freeze. I freeze them in 1 ounce ice cube trays (mostly the fruit purees to add to yogurt, cottage cheese, or baby cereal) and in 4 ounce portions (for the more complete meals). Some of my baby's favorites are the Lovely Lentils, Apple-Mango Puree (mixed with plain yogurt), and the Sweet Potato with Spinach and Peas. I love this book and I love knowing my baby is eating healthy, tasty food that I've prepared.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book, But Use With Caution, June 26, 2006
    This is a great baby cook book. My son liked almost all the meals I made out of the recipes and they even tasted good to me. It is a fine book with colorful pictures which made it fun to read and use.

    But it is more a book for babies who are less likely to develop food allergies or negative reactions because of the use of some ingridients like cow's milk, orange juice and various spices. Furthermore, trust your own judgement and that of your doctors' on when to introduce certain foods because the author's opinions do not always comply with the recommendations made by The American Academy of Pediatrics.

    If you are free of those concerns, I would highly recommend it to you!

    1-0 out of 5 stars Terrible, April 19, 2009
    This book is very, very wrong about a lot of things. I asked my pediatrician about what I could feed my baby and a lot of things in this book he said NO. The time frame is awful. You are not supposed to give babies butter, onions, fish, eggs at 6 months of age. I will not use my book anymore and will get a new one.

    5-0 out of 5 stars EXCELLENT for easy first time moms, April 29, 2008
    I am a full time working basically single mom. I thought, "there is no way I can add making baby food to my list of things to do! I am just too busy!!" But as soon as I got this book, I began. And it's been 3 weeks straight of preparing my own home-made food for my 7 month old son....who has LOVED EVERY SINGLE THING.
    I made the pears-apple-cinnamon recipe...and took leftovers to work for myself! hehe
    It is very easy to follow, great recipes, easy to read through, organized well, and I don't have a single complaint. Thank you Ms. Karmel for giving me the tools to do it myself. :-)

    5-0 out of 5 stars This book proves it's easy to DIY!!, February 8, 2007
    I decided to try making my own baby food for my third child and I am SO sad that I waited!! Using recipes in this book I have made all sorts of different foods and he LOVES them. He is 7 months old and today he had broccoli and sweet potato and he couldn't get enough. My other kids never did like broccoli -- still don't.

    The fruit purees are so yummy that I have been known to steal a few bites myself. And I love knowing exactly what is going into my little guy's body. These recipes are easy, add alot of variety to their diet, and are simple to understand. I spent two hours yesterday and two hours the day before and now I have a freezer full of little cubes. They are ready to thaw and eat and I have enough to last about six weeks. And I think I spent about $20 on ingredients. With my older kids I would spend that much in a week on the jarred stuff.

    Give homemade baby food a try. This book is a great start, and the recipes aren't "out there" like some of the other books. I highly recommend it.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great book!, August 2, 2007
    This book is awesome. A quick word of advice for breastfeeding mothers. If you don't plan on feeding your baby a lot of solid foods until fully weaned do not make a lot of this food at one time. I made 5-6 recipes one day to stock my freezer, one month later I'm going to have to toss out some of it to make room for new foods as she is now 7 mo. old and ready to eat heavier stuff. The Trio of Vegetables recipe is a HIT and she voraciously eats it whenever I put that one in front of her. I love it too as it relieves any constipation she may get while breastfeeding.
    I bought this book along with the "Blender Baby Food." Both are great, however this is my favorite as I like being able to see pictures. If you want to make your child's food please note, it IS easy and fun to do...I can't tell you how many people gave me a hard time for wanting to make my own and are now jealous that I don't have to go to the store, nor deal with all those empty jars. Ice cube tray's and ziplock bags are all that are needed to store the food. Highly recommended. You can probably get away with just this book as there are SO many recipes I doubt I'll ever get around to making them before she begins eating the real deal!

    3-0 out of 5 stars Nice book, BUT be careful with some recipes, November 23, 2007
    For example, there are recipes with fish and cheese for ages 7-9, while fish are not reccomended for babies until 2 years of age and cheese for babies until 12 months. Then scrambled eggs for ages 9-12 months - babies should not have egg whites until 12 months and the later you introduce them the better. The author might be a good cook, but she definitely doesn't know anything about what are babies NOT supposed to eat to prevent allergies and other problems.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Check with your family doctor or pediatrician first!, July 3, 2009
    I recommend checking with your Family Physician or Pediatrician before following the advice in this book. Butter, tomatoes, cow's milk/cheese, and citrus before age 1? Not advised by the American Academy of Pediatrics! Not to mention whole eggs, strawberries, and canned tuna. The bio on the author does not state she has any nutritional education whatsoever. Buyer beware. ... Read more

    8. Favorite
    by Karen McQuestion
    Kindle Edition (2009-11-01)
    list price: $2.99
    Asin: B002VBWEHS
    Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
    Sales Rank: 145
    Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    Sixteen-year-old Angie Favorite's life so far has been defined by the disappearance of her mother on her eleventh birthday. Since then, she and her older brother Jason have been raised by their grandmother, while their father tours with his rock band. When Angie is attacked by a complete stranger, the crime seems random, until she meets her attacker's wealthy mother, Lillian Bittner, and discovers nefarious connections between the Bittners and the mother no one has heard from in five years.

    Told in a unique and compelling voice, Favorite will enthrall readers with its spellbinding tension and emotionally satisfying conclusion.
    ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars A Great Book, September 21, 2010
    This book kept me up late the night I started reading it. I couldn't put it down. It caught my interest from the first page and held it to the last. I look forward to reading more by this author.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great Book - great author!, February 6, 2010
    I've recently discovered Karen McQuestion as an author and have been downloading all of her books on my Kindle to read during the blizzard we've been hit with. She is a very gifted author - her characters are very believable and detailed, and the stories are gripping.
    Favorite was a thriller - hard to put down, and had very interesting twists in it. I hope to read more of Ms.McQuestion!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent read, unable to put the book down, December 28, 2009
    Well written and easy to read, I wasnt able to put the book down. No gore, just well written and an enjoyable thriller...

    An excellent novel, and one I could thankfully buy in the UK (I seem unable to purchase every other book I try as being unavailable in my country)
    I will buy her other books if able to...for my new Kindle
    A good read and well worth the money

    4-0 out of 5 stars Favorite, September 25, 2010
    I discovered Karen McQuestion while searching for something new to read and was very pleasantly surprised. I may be a bit biased, as I am from Wisconsin, which is the setting so that roped me in off the bat. It was an intriguing, quick read that kept me wanting more. Very well written and suspenseful. I will continue to seek out books by this author and would recommend this one to anyone who enjoys a good mystery.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A very enjoyable read, April 3, 2010
    I have to admit the reason I was first drawn to this book was because of its 4 & 1/2 stars rating and also the price. I would normaly only read novels on my commute to and from work. But once I started reading this I was hooked and couldn't put it down. I read it in one day in the end. A well written, good paced thriller.

    5-0 out of 5 stars One of my favorite books, January 14, 2010
    This is the 2nd Karen McQuestion book I have read. I wasn't disappointed. Again read the book in one day. Her books draw you in very quickly and you don't want to put down the book. Love the way you feel touched by her stories. A wonderful read, not deep just enjoyable.

    Did not realize these books are self-published. Can't imagine why a publishing house wouldn't jump on this author. Thanks for not disappointing me again! Great job Karen. Keep them coming.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Favorite, November 23, 2010
    Favorite would make a wonderful gift for the young reader on your Christmas list. It has all the elements of a great novel - excitement, suspense (I personally couldn't put it down), believable characters, and a glimpse of young romance. All this creates just the right combination to keep a girl interested in reading good books. Like all of Karen McQuestion's novels, this is a winner!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great read, September 5, 2010
    I thought that was a great book, couldn't put it down, read it in a couple of hours. Never heard of the author, but so far I have read three of her books on my IPAD. I would definitely tell my friends to read her books. I look at other reviews and get so confised, I am glad I make up my own mind. I think you will enjoy her books!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Carolyn White Tipton, Indiana, August 2, 2010
    I never heard of this author and I have read thousands of books; but I thought what the heck it sounded interesting....I luved the twist's that McQuestion did in the book. So much so, I bought a few others. Try it!

    5-0 out of 5 stars enjoyed this book!, May 19, 2010
    i read this book in two sittings and look forward to reading more material by this author. ... Read more

    9. You're Not the Boss of Me: Brat-proofing Your Four- to Twelve-Year-Old Child
    by Betsy Brown Braun
    list price: $15.99 -- our price: $10.87
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0061346632
    Publisher: Harper Paperbacks
    Sales Rank: 1211
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    "Save me! My child is acting like a brat!"

    What parent hasn't thought her child was a brat at one point or another? Whether your child really is a brat, is at risk of becoming one, or is simply trying to grow up in a world filled with temptations and distractions, you'll love this book! It's the ultimate hands-on guide to cultivating character traits that are tried-and-true "bratbusters." Full of no-nonsense, practical "Tips and Scripts," You're Not the Boss of Me offers just the help you need to deal with many of the more challenging behaviors typical of four- to twelve-year-olds. With Betsy Brown Braun's humorous, supportive, and authoritative voice as a guide, navigating some of the most exasperating aspects of these formative years with confidence and laying the groundwork for your child's future just got a whole lot easier!

    It's All Here—What to Say and Do to Help Your Child:

    • Get Over the Gimmes
    • Tell the Truth
    • Be Self-Reliant
    • Develop Empathy
    • Show Gratitude
    • Be Respectful
    • Take Responsibility
    • Be Independent
    • Exercise Humor
    • and Not Be Spoiled!
    ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars THE resource, April 22, 2010
    I absolutely love this book and have been awaiting the release - well, I have not been disappointed! Betsy's advice in this book is consistent and right-on, as was her guidance from her first book. It's such a pleasure to have books that speak to the current challenges of parenting and give no-nonsense, straight forward advice as well as specific scenarios and scripts. Not only have I continually used her previous book for my personal parenting challenges, but repeatedly recommend it to my clients as well. The same is absolutely true of "You're Not the Boss..." I immediately flipped to the chapter of my current challenge and will at some point devour every page. Once again, I will be using this book for my own guidance and professionally as well. Thank you Betsy - this is just what we all need. I await the next child development stage...

    Dr. E.M. Rivera, Psychologist & mother of two.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The best advice......., May 11, 2010
    Thanks to Betsy for another book filled with practical, useful, advice. Betsy is amazing because she completely understands and is very knowledgeable about children's development. She has practical expectations for kids depending on their age. This book, as well as her first book, is filled with useful scripts and advice for dealing with all aspects of raising children.......I do not know what I would do without these books! I refer to them all the time! Betsy is sensitive to the emotional needs of children, yet she has realistic expectations for manners and discipline. The perfect combination!

    5-0 out of 5 stars This book is every parent's bible!, May 6, 2010
    I love this book! Betsy gives such great advice that is so useful and very insightful! Everything she says is very logical and I find it easy to translate into my family's every day life. Keep on writing Betsy!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Loved it!, April 25, 2010
    This book is fantastic and offers very clear and helpful answers to problems that I deal with on a daily basis. All parents should read!! (especially the parents of the kid having a tantrum next door)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Re-Read, Re-Read, Re-Read!, August 19, 2010
    This is a keeper, front and center on the bookshelf, to refer to again and again! I learned so much from this book and Betsy on the important things in life: gratitude, self-reliance, independence, respect, empathy, responsibility and the list goes on. I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to be a better person, and parent. - Vicky from VickyandJencom

    5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful!, May 9, 2010
    As an elementary school teacher and parent of three children under five years old, I have relied heavily on Betsy's first book, Just Tell Me What to Say. It is easily accessible in my house and classroom, to help with the many questions I have daily regarding my students and my own children! Once again, Betsy Brown Braun, has managed to give incredible guidance to the problems parents (and educators!) face with children nowadays, and has done so in a way that is humorous, thoroughly engaging and realistic. I am still amazed that someone can make me laugh aloud while I gain valuable knowledge on how to be the best parent and teacher I can be! Thank you, Betsy. I will highly recommend this book to all of my personal and professional contacts, and ANYONE trying to raise a "Brat Free"child!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Betsy Brown Braun is a gem!, May 9, 2010
    Once again, Betsy Brown Braun, in her newest book, has nailed so many current problems that parents face with their children using humor, common sense and practical advice. But with a twist, since Betsy's personal style feels as if she is talking to you directly. Betsy uncovers subtle yet important nuances of parenting such as voice tone, mirror neurons, eye contact, building empathy, and selfishness, as well as the oh-so-common refrain of childhood: "I'm Bored". I particularly like the way that Betsy provides 'scripts' for parents to follow, thus providing important role models for young parents. In this world of fragmented families, Betsy provides the important voice of the matriarch in our global village, imparting practical advice and support. You will feel as if she is in your living room at times, for the situations that Betsy chooses to highlight in these pages will be familiar to many parents. As a practicing psychologist, I am purchasing several copies of this book to keep on my office resource shelf for my clients!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great Title That Delivers Much Needed Advice For Parents, May 10, 2010
    You're Not the Boss of Me is a terrific, no-nonsense, current parenting resource whose time has come. This book is the kind of book that can be read as issues arise. I love that. The book is laid out beautifully and is very easy to navigate. As the author tells us, it is chock full of great information that can be a bit overwhelming to read at one sitting, so using the book as a reference manual is where it is at its best.

    The book covers parenting topics (geared to 4-12 year olds)including: communication, independence, discipline, boredom, honesty, spoiling, and sense of humor, just to name a few. Some of my favorites pieces of wisdom and I'm paraphrasing here: p2. If you think your child does not hear you, think again. p.73 Praise as a technique p.94 Address the behavior NOT the child. p.96 Parents need privacy, too (the whole idea that by a parent demanding privacy themselves, they set a great example for their kids. We forget that sometimes!) P.99 Gossip about your child's good behavior P 145. Leave Your Child Alone This was my absolutely favorite section of the book - a can't miss! I could go on and on! The two appendices at the back of the book are full of little gems, too: Fifty-Two Cures of Affluenza and 100 Ways to Say "Good Job."

    This book is a resource that very parent will come to depend on. I anticipate many frayed pages from over-use. A terrific gift for new parents. ... Read more

    10. Gunn's Golden Rules: Life's Little Lessons for Making It Work
    by Tim Gunn
    list price: $23.99 -- our price: $16.31
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 1439176566
    Publisher: Gallery
    Sales Rank: 540
    Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    On the runway of life, Tim Gunn is the perfect life coach.  You’ve watched him mentor talented designers on the hit television show Project Runway. Now the inimitable Tim Gunn shares his personal secrets for “making it work”—in your career, relationships, and life. Filled with delightfully dishy stories of fashion’s greatest divas, behind-the-scenes glimpses of Runway’s biggest drama queens, and never-before-revealed insights into Tim’s private life, Gunn’s Golden Rules is like no other how-to book you’ve ever read. In the world according to Tim, there are no shortcuts to success. Hard work, creativity, and skill are just the beginning. By following eighteen tried-and-true principles, you can apply Tim’s rules to anything you set your mind to. You’ll learn why Tim frowns on displays of bad behavior, like the vitriolic outburst by Martha Stewart’s daughter about her mother’s name-brand merchandise. You’ll discover the downfalls of divadom as he describes Vogue’s André Leon Talley being hand-fed grapes and Anna Wintour being carried downstairs by her bodyguards. And you’ll get Tim’s view on the backstabbing by one designer on Project Runway and how it brilliantly backfired. Then there are his down-to-earth guidelines for making life better—for yourself and others—in small and large ways, especially in an age that favors comfort over politeness, ease over style. Texting at the dinner table? Wearing shorts to the theater? Not in Tim’s book. Living a well-mannered life of integrity and character is hard work, he admits, but the rewards are many: being a good friend, being glamorous and attractive, and being a success— much like Tim himself! He is never one to mince words. But Tim Gunn is always warm, witty, wise, and wonderfully supportive— just the mentor you need to design a happy, creative, and fulfilling life that will never go out of style. ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Carry On!, September 7, 2010
    Tim Gunn, from 'Project Runway' has written a book filled with tidbits of advice about life, love, celebrities, family and how to be your own person. It is an easy, fun book to read. Tim is a man of his word, he gives it to us straight, and tells the truth to whomever is asking. He doesn't play games, and the interesting stories of celebrities may be a seller for this book, but his advice and stories of his life are the real gold.

    Tim grew up in Washington, D.C., the son of the ghostwriter for J. Edgar Hoover. The stories he could tell, and he does give us a few. One interesting bit is the day he and his sister were invited to see Vivian Vance in J Edgar Hoover's office. Tim loved Ethel Mertz from 'I Love Lucy' and was ecstatic at the meeting. A lovely lady but upon reflection she had a similarity in looks to Mr Hoover. Could it be that the rumors that Mr Hoover liked to cross dress were true, and Vivian was in reality the lovely J Edgar Hoover? Tim's dad never told any stories from his life with the FBI. His dad died from Alzheimer's disease, and his mother is still alive and driving him crazy in a loving sort of way. Tim knew at a young age he was different. He suffered from a stutter and was picked on. At one time he attempted suicide, and this opened the door to therapy, and that may have been a saving grace for Tim Gunn. Tim moved to New York and started his career in fashion. He was on the faculty of Parsons The New School for Design, and was chair of fashion design at the school from August 2000 to March 2007, after which he joined Liz Claiborne as its Chief Creative Officer.

    His most famous role is that of on-air mentor to designers on 'Project Runway', and that role has led to Bravo's Tim Gunn's Guide to Style. He is such a leader of fashion advice and style that he is in great demand. Personally he would prefer to stay at home. He is a loner and loves his life. He had one great love, and that turned out badly. He is not sure that he won't meet someone, but he is happy with his life as it is. He has a sister and a niece, Wallace, whom he adores. The book is filled with amusing incidents with celebrities, e.g Issac Mizrahi and the 'Diva from Vogue', Anna Wintour. He likes Martha Stewart but thinks her daughter is perpetually angry. Tim Gunn believes in being nice to everyone unless someone cuts him off. He offers much good advice and gives examples-one issue that I wholeheartedly agree with is the manner is which we treat waiters and wait staff. To be mean and surly shows off your true personality, and those who under tip are sometimes the worst. The book is divided into chapters, and the heading sets the tone for the chapter. Tim Gunn has led a life of hard work but filled with such a quality of fun and good times. He is well respected and always well dressed. He is a handsome man and has the air and tone of someone who would be such a good friend.

    Tim said in a recent interview for the 'Daily Beast' "It's easier to ask forgiveness than permission. In the fashion industry and the entertainment industry, there's a class system. I find it offensive. ... If one were to sit with me in a quiet little bistro somewhere, one would get these stories out of me pretty quickly. It's not as though I needed a sodium pentathol and a glass of room-temp gin to do it." His book is the quiet little bistro, and we have heard the stories. The dirt gets all the attention, but Tim Gunn's life and advice is the real book. As Tim Gunn frequently says 'Carry On'.

    Highly Recommended. prisrob 09-07-10

    Tim Gunn: A Guide to Quality, Taste and Style (Tim Gunn's Guide to Style)

    92Y - Tim Gunn in Conversation with Budd Mishkin (March 11, 2008)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Tim Gunn is The Real Deal, September 10, 2010
    Gunn's Golden Rules: Life's Little Lessons for Making It Work is a real jewel. For those of you who have seen Tim Gunn on Project Runaway, on talk shows like Bonnie Hunt or in other venues, his voice comes out strongly in the book. Gunn radiates warmth and a genuine spirit--seemingly an oxymoron in the cut-throat fashion world.

    Which just proves that nice guys can finish first--that you need not be nasty, mean or impolite to climb to the top in any profession. With 18 rules, this book shows you how you can succeed in life--while being nice.

    Gunn doesn't believe in luck to succeed--he believes in hard work, skill, dedication and creatively. One of his phrases that he uses on Project Runaway in in life is: "Make it work". He says: "You should use what you have on hand to transform your situation." In other words, if you wait until everything is perfect before proceeding, it ain't gonna happen!

    He believes in politeness and in being kind to others. This book, he writes, is a "manifesto for kindness, generosity and integrity."

    What I like about this book most is that, unlike so many recently published, Gunn emphasizes hard work, perseverance and creatively to reach goals--not magical thinking. Obviously, not all of us will reach the level of success that Gunn has. Bit the book is motivational, fun (the dishing--delightful!) and a guide to good living.

    I also like the fact that he tells us that the world owes us nothing. There are far too many people who feel, for whatever reason, that they are entitled. Gunn does NOT like these people....These are usually the same people who are rude to waiters and other people (something Gunn rails against. Yes! I used to wait tables and couldn't stand people who were rude just because.)

    Highly recommend.

    While this is not a fashion/lifestyle book, you may be interested in it because you are a fan of Tim Gunn. If so, I recommend

    Tim Gunn: A Guide to Quality, Taste and Style. As an interior designer, I would also like to recommend Harmonious Environment to add some style and beauty to your home!

    Love the book!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Why I really enjoyed this book, September 10, 2010
    As stated in the product summary, this is book is part memoir, part observations about life.

    I am not a big TV watcher, but I got hooked on watching Project Runway around 5 years ago. Part of the reason was Tim Gunn. There is something so fundamentally decent and kind about that man, and you cannot help but feel affection towards him.

    I am usually a fiction reader, but I picked up this book and started reading it and couldn't put it down. It's not simply clever commentary on fashion and etiquette but also replete with Tim's observations about such subjects as varied as child rearing, schooling, and therapy.

    And did I mention it's laugh-out-loud funny? I must've woke my husband up a dozen times with my outbursts. One of the parts that really had me cackling were Tim's descriptions of eating (from foreign foods that have animals that are still alive and crawl off your plate) to the topic of vegetarianism.

    If you are a fan of Tim Gunn, I don't have to sell you on this book - you'll probably be interested in reading it. And yes, he does dish on some of the designers as well as the judges. But I do believe that anyone could benefit from reading this - his decency, his honestly, and his integrity shine through every page. For those of you who are familiar with Tim Gunn, and for those of you who aren't, here's just a brief quote from the book that so well catches his wit and personality:

    "I hold doors open for women, and I also hold them for men. When I'm at Macy's, I don't let the door slam behind me when I walk through. It has nothing to do with gender. I would hold a door open for anyone.

    Would I hold the door for a dog? Okay, may not, because a dog shouldn't be at Macy's."


    4-0 out of 5 stars Golden Rules Never Out of Style, September 10, 2010

    I picked up Gunn's Golden Rules: Life's Lessons for Making It Work as a gift for a friend who is a big fan of Project Runway, the show on which author Tim Gunn serves as a mentor. I've only seen an episode or two of the show myself, but when I started thumbing through the book before wrapping it up, I ended up sitting down and reading the whole thing. Gunn and his collaborator Ada Calhoun have penned an eminently readable and very entertaining book outlining Gunn's rules for living a life of integrity.

    Gunn argues that those rules - working hard, treating others with respect, knowing when to speak up and when to keep your mouth shut, etc. - are not now and never will be out of fashion. Into his rules, Gunn has woven a number of great anecdotes centering around Project Runway and around some well known names in the fashion and entertainment industry, helping to keep the overall tone of the book light and amusing.

    Gunn's Golden Rules: Life's Lessons for Making It Work isn't the type of book I usually read - fiction is more my thing - but I found it both a lot of fun and nicely inspiring. Even though I wasn't familiar with Gunn before reading this, after finishing, I felt I had come to understand the essence of the man and to admire the manners and methods that guide his life. It was nice to read something from someone with whom I apparently share a good many values and who can eloquently communicate them without sounding the least bit preachy!


    5-0 out of 5 stars Would that I were more like him, September 24, 2010
    Tim Gunn is, from start to finish, from his marrow to his crisply pressed blazer, a gentleman of the first order. Here's to a man who sets a higher standard, yet helps us see that we are able to achieve them.

    2-0 out of 5 stars Some interesting parts, but.., November 30, 2010
    I loved his first book, and still read it from time to time. This book however was a bit confusing, as a chapter's moral wouldn't necessarily stay on track, he would go off on tangents. It also seemed more like ranting and raving about the rudeness of certain people and even people in general. Which I think could be summed up in one chapter--yet each chapter seemed to end up in the same place as the chapter before, which is that people can be rude and obnoxious and how much better it is to be nice. Sort of like having road rage in print. The sort of things we say to ourselves every day when we come across nasty people. A whole book filled with just this sentiment--it was a bit random and a bit much. I still love Tim Gunn and will surely buy his next book if he writes another. Maybe better editing and more organization to the chapters and a distinct message in each chapter would be better. Still, an entertaining read in many places, with a little juicy gossip tossed in.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Gunn is Fun, September 16, 2010
    I downloaded a sample of this book on my Kindle, and had to buy the whole book right away. It's a charming read that's almost like spending an evening with Tim. I didn't buy it to read his golden rules so much as I did just because I like Tim Gunn so darn much and wanted to see what he had to say. I'm glad I did--what an enjoyable read! Even if you care not a whit about fashion, you will like spending time with Tim Gunn.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Made it Work, October 25, 2010
    Tim Gunn's new book was enjoyable, funny & really quite good. There was something to learn in every chapter.
    i have always found him to be a sweet and gentle man. He made this book work just fine.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Good Manners by Tim., October 4, 2010
    Love the Tim Gunn. he is such a nice man, just reading the book made me feel better about myself. Plus, he makes a lot of valid points about behavior and manners.

    5-0 out of 5 stars WWTGD?, September 26, 2010
    What Would Tim Gunn Do? You'll know the answer to that after reading this! Tim Gunn has put together a highly readable book that is all at once an autobiography, a plea for better manners, and a gossipy little tell-all that will have you laughing aloud at times. New York fashion icons; Project Runway behind the scenes; popular celebrities; even J. Edgar Hoover get mentioned. But, Tim's own personal story is probably the most compelling reason of all to read the book.

    A fun, intelligent, and at times painfully honest book. I wasn't prepared to like it as much as I did. An inspiring read. ... Read more

    11. You Mean I'm Not Lazy, Stupid or Crazy?!: The Classic Self-Help Book for Adults with Attention Deficit Disorder
    by Kate Kelly, Peggy Ramundo
    list price: $17.00 -- our price: $11.56
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0743264487
    Publisher: Scribner
    Sales Rank: 434
    Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    With over a quarter million copies in print, You Mean I'm Not Lazy, Stupid or Crazy?! is one of the bestselling books on attention deficit disorder (ADD) ever written. There is a great deal of literature about children with ADD. But what do you do if you have ADD and aren't a child anymore? This indispensable reference -- the first of its kind written for adults with ADD by adults with ADD -- focuses on the experiences of adults, offering updated information, practical how-tos and moral support to help readers deal with ADD. It also explains the diagnostic process that distinguishes ADD symptoms from normal lapses in memory, lack of concentration or impulsive behavior. Here's what's new:

    • The new medications and their effectiveness
    • The effects of ADD on human sexuality
    • The differences between male and female ADD -- including falling estrogen levels and its impact on cognitive function
    • The power of meditation
    • How to move forward with coaching

    And the book still includes advice about:

    • Achieving balance by analyzing one's strengths and weaknesses
    • Getting along in groups, at work and in intimate and family relationships -- including how to decrease discord and chaos
    • Learning the mechanics and methods for getting organized and improving memory
    • Seeking professional help, including therapy and medication
    ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Know you're smart but think you're nuts? Then read this!, January 5, 1997
    I first bought this book strictly because of it's title. Having spent 45 years feeling crazy & stupid and being accused of laziness most of my life, I decided this book was for me. I didn't realize how very right I was! When I started to read I realized I was reading about myself. I identified with many of the descriptions of ADD from childhood through to adulthood. It was incredible to learn I was not alone in my daily frustration. This wonderful, informative book started me on a road of self-discovery. I was subsequently tested and diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder. The authors describe this "disability" as an "ADD-ed dimension" and they are so right! I now have self-esteem and self pride. My intelligence has been tested and verified .. I'm not lazy, crazy or stupid and I thank the authors of this book for that discovery. This book has changed my life. I can now read a page without losing my place. I don't forget what I'm saying or lose things as often. I have learned that I am one of many who use an additional area of my brain & must therefore learn to "process things differently". I no longer feel timid, ashamed, afraid or just plain different. I can now accept and like myself for the first time in my life.

    This book is written in a very "easy-reading" style. There is a wonderful blending of research facts and referenced stories and quips. As an adult diagnosed with ADD at the age of 45, I can attest to the value of this book. I highly recommend "You mean I'm not lazy, stupid or crazy" to anyone who has ever felt they were!

    3-0 out of 5 stars Needs updating, March 10, 2006
    While reading some of the previous reviews, I saw one that mentioned "contemporary science" - written in 1999. The first customer review for this book is from 1997. If I'd read it then, I would have rated it higher. But a book that deals with anything medical needs to be updated long before it's a decade old, which this one now is. The chapter on medication is completely outdated; it shouldn't be referred to by anyone who wants to know what options are available now. And while all the scientific/medical questions about ADD/ADHD haven't been answered, more is known now than when this book was written.

    The fact that this book has helped many people understand themselves better is great, and I'm not one who equates wanting to understand yourself with looking for excuses. This book has been recommended not only doctor to patient but friend to friend for a long time, and what it has can be helpful - the reason I gave it three stars. But I hope a second edition isn't being held back by the fact that the first one is still being recommended and purchased; it could be so much better if the information were updated.

    I personally had a more general problem with the book, which may also be related to its age. I'm primarily inattentive type ADD, and felt like I was a real outsider while reading this book. Some things applied to me, but a lot didn't. And anytime there was a statement like, "We all remember from our childhood..." I'd think, "Nope. Not me." Not that there's anything wrong with a book aimed at people with combined or primarily hyperactive ADD, and I didn't take away a star because of it, but "nowadays" that would probably be stated more clearly in the information about the book, or even on the cover. But back in 1996, that might have been less likely. (I told my doctor that reading this book reminded me of my experience of going to a support group for people with depression and being the only unipolar one there. You're "supposed to" fit in, and you kind of do, but not really.)

    If this is the first book about ADD someone reads, it would be eye-opening, and it was probably the best around 10 years ago. But I don't think that's true anymore. A second edition of it would be very useful.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A TERRIFIC resource!, January 18, 2000
    "You Mean I'm Not Lazy, Stupid or Crazy! " belongs on the bedside table of every ADDer and of every parent, spouse or teacher who is trying to understand the ADDers in their lives. It was cutting edge when it was written and its information is still right on target.

    As an ADDer, ADD Coach, and founder of a company that trains ADD Coaches, I not only recommend "Lazy/Crazy" to anyone who asks for an ADD book recommendation, it has been required reading for OFI's 18-month ADD Coach Training program since the first beta classes in 1994. (Kate joined us several years later and is now President of OFI; Peggy joined us in 1999 and now heads up OFI's Sliding-Scale Coaching Clinic -- all the more reason I can recommend this book WITHOUT reservation!)

    An extremely readable book, obviously written from an "insiders" viewpoint, this book made me feel understood and validated -- like great advice from good friends. When I stumbled across it on the "New Books" table at a large Manhattan Bookstore (before I had met either of these authors) I started reading immediately. It was almost an hour before I finally forced myself to close the book, pay for it, and take it home. My copy is well-worn and multi-colored from all the highlighting I do to focus my attention.

    DO take the time, as the authors advise, to carefully read the first chapter. Although it is a little "heavier" reading than the rest of the book, the ADD information it provides will prove well worth the concentration it may take to go through it.

    (Helpful Hint: If your dominant modality is visual you will either LOVE the graphics or hate them. For my clients in the latter group, a sticky-note covering the graphics allowed them to focus more easily on the text.)

    Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, MCC -- founder & CEO of The Optimal Functioning Institute�

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    58 of 59 people found the following review helpful:
    5.0 out of 5 stars The most useful book I've found, April 4, 2005
    I was diagnosed with ADD at the age of 9. In the seven-plus years since then, I've read a great deal of books about ADD. Almost all of them rely on the same "You're a unique and special snowflake!" attitude, and the same generalizations about people with ADD.
    After I was given this book as a gift, I put off reading this book for a while, sure thatit would be more of the same. Instead, it was incredable in its honesty. Instead of playing up the benefits of ADD, making it sound like a wonderful blessing, Kelly understands that, sometimes, it's also a curse. Those recently diagnosed need may reassurance, of course. However, when that's ALL a book is, it loses its value as a resource. That's why this book was so great- it stated that there's nothing wrong with ADD in the first couple chapters, then moved right along (giving it a more believable tone than most books, whose constant "There's nothing wrong at all!" statments make me suspect that maybe the author is trying to hide something) to talking about theories involving ADD (which was pretty cool).
    My favorite thing about this book is that it talks about the problems ADD can cause in various aspects of your life, and how ADD can manifest itself in different people. Rather than make general assumptions about people with ADD, the authors recognize that ADD is a complex, varied condition. Before this, I'd no idea that my sluggish periods might be part of my ADD, that it manifests itself verbally, and that my tactile defensivness (an occasional aversion to physical contact) wasn't because I was aggressive or weird- I was just overstimulated! No other book had even MENTIONED this kind of thing.
    Keeping with the diversity of problems, the authors offer a diversity of possible ways to deal with problems arising from ADD. Each idea can easily be altered to fit your needs- another big plus.
    Honestly, if you or your teenage child have ADD or ADHD, you should not be without this book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A classic that I often recommend to newly diagnosed adults, January 15, 2005
    First, I want to start with the title: It is so reassuring and affirming. How many adults and older teens have thought this when they first realized that they had AD/HD? Even the illustrations have a humorous, comfy, reassuring feel.

    This book deals with the every day practicalities of living with AD/HD. First, the authors reassure the reader that he or she is not bad or blameworthy. This is good, but then they go on to help the individual to take charge. Ultimately this leads to a new sense of empowerment and an enlightened sense of responsibility. The book deals with the often overlooked issues of scheduling, spirituality, adequate sleep and maintaining social supports.

    My favorite chapter is the one on how to organize your workspace. This chapter is worth the price of the book. So often people waste time getting up and looking for the stapler or the stamps when a few organizational tips could give them less reason to get up and get distracted.

    Best of all for this book: It also comes as an audiocassette!! I personally prefer the book because you can refer back to the individual chapters. If you are not a book reader, consider getting the cassette, and then buying the book so that you can refer to pertinent chapters.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Thought-provoking and common sense, May 24, 2001
    I found the book rather practical.

    First three chapters talk a lot about the symptoms and describe the nature of ADD. For a person who is not well acquainted with attention deficit disorder these three chapters would be a great jump-start.

    The rest of the book gives very common-sense, down-to-earth recommendations and ideas on how to "get used" to living an ADD life. A lot of time is spent on dealing with depression and anxiety thoughts. Various portions of the book are devoted to issues like ADD vs. work-place environment, family relations, and social interactions.

    I personally do not believe you have to be an MD or a professional of any other kind to have a sound and solid opinion on a subject as some of the reviewers have mentioned here. On the contrary - the most brilliant, the most ingenious, if you wish, ideas frequently come from "outsiders" who are not caught in the "routine thinking pattern" of a discipline or a field of studies. I express this opinion as a professional who worked with "outsiders" a lot and found their fresh thoughts very encouraging and breaking-through.

    Read this book and let it challenge you to think over the ways you live your ADD life, let it open some doors you were scared to open before, and find peace in acting in the ways you never thought you would ever act.

    Would make an intricate and a valuable gift for a person with an ADD! Will not offend your buddy in any way.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Good but can be hard to get through, February 2, 2003
    My daughter has ADD, and I probably do as well, so I've read quite a bit on this subject. While the book is very informative and does give personal accounts of what it's like to live w/ AD/HD, I found it hard to get through. It seems to ramble a bit at times and the organization and even the choice of print size and font made it hard for me to stay interested after a while. Basically, it reads as if was written by someone with AD/HD-- (which of course, it was), but that's what makes it hard to get through at times! I found Driven to Distraction by Hallowell and even Women With Attention Deficit Disorder by Solden much easier to read and just as (if not more) informative, especially for an ADDer with a tendency to lose interest if the book doesn't captivate me early on. Also, if you are very well informed on the biology/neurology etc. of ADD the first three chapters don't offer anything new. Bottom line, worth reading, but there are better choices out there.

    5-0 out of 5 stars GOOD REALISTIC ACCOUNT..., July 11, 2001
    I have ADD. I am 36 yrs old, female. I LIKED this book because it was written from a "Regular-Joes" perspective. Don't pay any mind to the guy who gave it "one star". He missed the point of this kind of book. He may not know it, but not everyone wants to read a hoity-toity physician's perspecitve on a complex condition. My experience has been, I think the people who actually HAVE it tend to have the most accurate information. It was very nice to just RELATE to what these 2 women journaled and observed through their own experiences - on the job and personally. I know ALOT about ADD ADHD and I appreciate ALL types of materials on this subject. Even when I don't agree with them sometimes, the only way you learn is by learning others perspectives. And this book is really - just that. I felt it was pretty much on target - quite honestly. I purchased the book about 5 years ago, and still use it as part of my ADD library. I find it very helpful and useful.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Where was this book when I needed it 20 years ago?, December 27, 2001
    How much of this scenario sounds familiar to you?
    I'm in my mid-thirties and have floundered my whole life....not just in one arena of life....but in many (if not all). For 20 years, one thought has been weighing excrutiatingly on my brain: "Why am I so (explitive deleted)different?" Does any of this sound like you?
    This book...this wonderful book has finally given me some kind of validation, by eerily describing MY life....hell, I'm even an advertising copywiter....I have no idea how they got that one right. I'm telling anybody who is interested in finally getting real answers to those frustating questions that never got asked, "Read this book, friend." I have already wasted well over 20 years because I didn't know what the hell was "wrong with me." And, yes, for 20 years, I KNEW I wasn't stupid....I KNEW I wasn't crazy (well...a little crazy, but NOT insane), so that left me with feelings that I was must be lazy. I honestly didn't think I was lazy, but since that what everybody said, it must have been true. And that only made me feel guilty!
    People, if you have something to be gained by conquering ADD, I highly suggest that you read this book. If for no other reason than for personal validation that you're not lazy, stupid or crazy.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Most Helpful Book on ADD I have ever read....!!!, August 26, 2001
    This book has really changed my life in so many ways. Having ADD as an adult is one thing....but being able to do something about it in a positive way is yet another challenge. This book enabled me to make some really fundamental changes in the way I operate to take advantage of the skills I have. It really helps in enabling you to rationalize your "lazy/crazy" behaviours by giving you a pseudo-scientific explanation for why you do the things you do. It does this by relating your actions to they way the brain works in an ADD vs. non-ADD person. Also, it relates brain functionality with day-to-day examples such as filing cabinets, etc... Best part of the book is that it doesn't give you specific answers, since there is a different solution for every individual. Rather, it arms you with the fundamental facts/issues/consequences so you can formulate something that works best for you. As a well-educated adult in a challenging profession, this book has helped me cope with my limitations due to ADD very effectively. I can't thank the authors enough...and that is why I am writing this review so that others may benefit. ... Read more

    12. The Happiest Baby on the Block: The New Way to Calm Crying and Help Your Newborn Baby Sleep Longer
    by Harvey Karp
    list price: $15.00 -- our price: $10.20
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0553381466
    Publisher: Bantam
    Sales Rank: 447
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    In perhaps the most important parenting book of the decade, Dr. Harvey Karp reveals an extraordinary treasure sought by parents for centuries—an automatic “off-switch” for their baby’s crying.

    No wonder pediatricians across the country are praising him and thousands of Los Angeles parents, from working moms to superstars like Madonna and Pierce Brosnan, have turned to him to learn the secrets for making babies happy.

    Never again will parents have to stand by helpless and frazzled while their poor baby cries and cries.Dr. Karp has found there IS a remedy for colic. “I share with parents techniques known only to the most gifted baby soothers throughout history …and I explain exactly how they work.”

    In a innovative and thought-provoking reevaluation of early infancy, Dr. Karp blends modern science and ancient wisdom to prove that newborns are not fully ready for the world when they are born.Through his research and experience, he has developed four basic principles that are crucial for understanding babies as well as improving their sleep and soothing their senses:

    The Missing Fourth Trimester: as odd as it may sound, one of the main reasons babies cry is because they are born three months too soon.

    The Calming Reflex: the automatic reset switch to stop crying of any baby in the first few months of life.

    The 5 “S’s”: the simple steps (swaddling, side/stomach position, shushing, swinging and sucking) that trigger the calming reflex.For centuries, parents have tried these methods only to fail because, as with a knee reflex, the calming reflex only works when it is triggered in precisely the right way.Unlike other books that merely list these techniques Dr. Karp teaches parents exactly how to do them, to guide cranky infants to calm and easy babies to serenity in minutes…and help them sleep longer too.

    The Cuddle Cure: the perfect mix the 5 “S’s” that can soothe even the most colicky of infants.

    In the book, Dr. Karp also explains:

    What is colic?

    Why do most babies get much more upset in the evening?

    How can a parent calm a baby—in mere minutes?

    Can babies be spoiled?

    When should a parent of a crying baby call the doctor?

    How can a parent get their baby to sleep a few hours longer?

    Even the most loving moms and dads sometimes feel pushed to the breaking point by their infant’s persistent cries.Coming to the rescue, however, Dr. Karp places in the hands of parents, grandparents, and all childcare givers the tools they need to be able to calm their babies almost as easily as…turning off a light.
    ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Magic, December 1, 2004
    The advice in this book is pure magic. Our baby wasn't colicky but she was Very fussy. Everytime I did what this book suggested - swaddle, jiggle, hold sideways, and shush - she would stop crying instantly. Yes, Instantly. It was like pure magic. Nothing worked before this book. I encourage everyone to buy it, it is a life-saver.

    I agree with a previous review, in that it is most helpful the first three months. That's what it's geared towards. The author calls it the fourth trimester and focuses on that. After I started swaddling her (as the author clearly isslustrates how to do) my daughter started sleeping through the night. I no longer need this book because I was able to be so responsive to her needs in the first three months, that she is now secure enough to sleep on her own without being swaddled.

    This book is also very well organized. As a matter of fact, you don't even have to read the whole book! He has helpful summaries and bullet points along the way. Just reading one page where he clearly and succinctly summarizes everything can save your life the first three months and get your baby on the road to being a trusting, self-suffient child.

    This book did more than just help me soothe my infant. It increased my self-esteem as a parent. I knew that jiggling my baby soothed her. But the horrified looks on people's faces when you start jiggling a baby! Oh my! At least after reading this book it helped me know that it was indeed ok to do what intutively worked.

    Also, the author is right - there's no spoling a baby. I "spoiled" my daughter like crazy. And what do I have now? A clingly baby who is addicted to jiggling and swaddling (as many people predicted when I followed the author's advice - "she'll be addicted and you'll have to swaddle her FOREVER!"). No! I have a happy baby who goes to sleep on her own and sleeps through the night. By the way, she's 4 months old. She Never needs to be jiggled anymore, or swaddled. I still put white noise on in the background for her though. But I hear many adults sleep that way too.

    This book is also very sensitve and kind to the needs of our precious little babies. He says that the first three months are the fourth trimester. That the baby was in you for nine whole months and got used to there being sound and movement and confinement. And when they're born it's unnatural (and, in my opinion, cruel) to leave them to their own devices and figure out how to be a human being in the world right away. They need our help while they get their bearings. They're so tiny and the world is so big.

    As a matter of fact, many book I read suggest not swaddling past the second month, or even past the first month. But the author recommends doing it for as long as the baby needs it. All babies are different and need to take their own time! And not only for as long as the baby needs it, but also as much as the baby needs it. That's right, swaddle the baby as often as the baby wants it. Some books say this hinders development but the author points out that if the baby needs it, it calms the baby down enough for the baby to be a ble to pay attention to the world and learn. My baby wanted to be swaddled for many hours out of every day. I felt guilty becuase so many other resources say not to do that. But this book helped me see that it was only natural. The author asked - doesn't your baby seem happier this way? YES!! She was So much happier when she was swaddled. And this did not make her addicted to it, as I said before - she went from being swaddled most of the day to not being swaddled Ever quickly and effortlessly.

    I know this is a long review. I just have to strongly recommend this book. It's usefuleness and help go so much beyond sleeping issues. I love this book. It is the single most useful book I have ever read.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Very good - but only for the first three months., September 6, 2002
    This book is an excellent read - having a nice easy style and with some Anthropology thrown in. Be warned, this is not very good for babies over three months. I have a two month old who is fussy, and I found that I already used a lot of these techniques without knowing it! The one thing that has really been helpful so far is swaddling. It seems to help her take naps better. For 3 months and up, look at "The No-Cry Sleep Solution". It is similar to this book in that it uses a common sense approach to getting babies to calm down or sleep. Also, Healthy Sleep, Happy Child" gives a more scientific explanation of baby sleep.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Happiest Baby on the Block, May 30, 2002
    This book saved our lives! Our little girl came home from the hospital wailing and it never stopped. She would cry for hours upon hours and nothing would soothe her--not cuddling, not feedings, not burping, not changings, not my mother-in-law (the baby soother extraordinaire), nothing...until this book!

    The horror is finally over--the technique absolutely works every time. The book is well-written, easy to follow and the examples of other parents going through this are so reassuring. I am happy to report that now, at 7 weeks, we have lots of cooing, many smiles, bonding (nearly impossible with a screaming baby) and a lot more sleeping. You can call the author Dr. Karp, but in our house he is reverentially referred to as Saint Harvey--our patron saint of babies. If you have a fussy baby I can not recommend this book enough. It truly works miracles!

    If I were the Queen of Everything I would make sure all new parents and hospital nurses learned this method. It could save so many, so much. Thank you Saint Harvey!

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Most Important Purchase for New Parents, July 30, 2002
    I have read just about every major book that purports to explain why some babies are fussy and how to calm them. None of them can hold a candle to Dr. Karp's book. Forget about gas and all the other theories -- this book clearly and easily explains what newborns are experiencing. And the best part is the technique for calming that is based on cutting edge medical research. The book's explanation of the "calming reflex" is pretty fascinating, but if you really want to calm your baby, buy the accompanying video with the book. It is an eye-opener! When you see Dr. Karp take a dozen different babies and calm them in a matter of seconds, you finally see what the book can't stress enough -- it's a calming REFLEX, just like swallowing, and anyone can learn how to trigger it. The video is a surefire way to assure yourself that you are mastering the technique. It shows the technique again and again, with helpful tips and trouble-shooting. This is the ticket to new parents' peace of mind.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Good info...but not worth a whole book, June 28, 2010
    The thesis in the book is excellent - by understanding a baby's needs and how the first few months are really the "fourth trimester," we can learn to use his five-steps to calming a colicky infant.

    The problem isn't that the advice is bad, because it's excellent and very practical. It's that he just repeats and repeats the same points, occasionally slipping in another nugget of useful info. This should be a 10-page handout, not a book. Heck, I probably could paste in enough directions for you to do this in this comment box, thus saving you from buying the whole book.

    My advice - check it out from the library or borrow it, because in 20 minutes you'll have figured it out and you you can spend the money on diapers (the need of which cannot be abridged!).

    5-0 out of 5 stars Peace at last!, May 30, 2002
    Dr. Karp was a Godsend when we needed him most. His superb advice helped us calm our twin boys and enabled them and us to sleep. Up until reading his book, we had very fussy baby boys who would not sleep for prolonged periods of time. The first time we used the 5 S's, the boys slept 3 hours. Prior to that they would only sleep an hour at most because their gas pains would wake them up. It's obvious that Dr. Karp researched his methods and delivers a succinct method that can help all parents. Out of all the books that I've read, this one has made a significant difference in my childrens' lives and is a MUST HAVE!
    Thank you Dr. Karp.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Great for newborns, August 22, 2002
    Well, Dr. Karp's methods have worked well on my newborn, and I stress newborn. He presents some interesting facts about other cultures where crying babies are rare and colic doesn't exist. These cultures mostly have their babies at their sides in a sling, and unlimited access to suckle at mother's breast. With baby in a snug sling, constant body contact, the feeling of constant motion and breast milk access, Dr. Karp states this mimcs conditions in the womb: tight fit, constant movement, and lack of hunger from being fed via the umbilical cord while in utero. He goes on to say that months 0-3 of baby's life are the missing "fourth trimester", hence his methods of the following 5 S's work well since they imitate the womb environment.

    The 5 S's are as follows:
    1. Swaddle - he describes and illustrates an excellent swaddle technique, the tighter, the more womb-like
    2. Side / Stomach - laying baby on side or stomach. He reiterates that when laying baby on stomach, baby should NEVER be left unattended. Positioning in this way is most comfortable for baby, when he's on his back, he has the sensation of free-falling, and thus feeling insecure.
    3. Shush - baby was used to hearing your blood flow for those 9 months, so a loud shushing will calm baby down. Ever notice how he quiets when you turn on the vacuum? I've used a white noise machine, all the loud shushing got me blue in the face and most nearly passed out!
    4. Swinging - rhythmic, jiggling motion. You don't necessarily have to use a swing for this one. He describes the motion as being a very nervous person holding a baby. You use very tiny shaky movements, movements must be tiny, other wise shaking baby with long, hard jerks may result in shaken baby syndrome. This movement imitates the constant movement he felt while in-utero.
    5. Suck - sucking on a pacifier, nipple, your finger, etc...

    These 5 S's will initiate the calming reflex when done in that order and in the correct way. We've all used those methods to try to calm baby, but we've likely used them as separate entities. Much like the knee-jerk reflex works only when your doctor hits your knee at the exact location, the calming reflex works only when the S's are done in an exact manner. He describes in detail how to do this.

    So far it's worked for my daughter. My huge concern is, what happens after she passes her three month mark? Dr. Karp states that after three months, baby will start self-calming and will rely on the 5 S's less and less. Judging by all the "How to Get Your Baby to Calm and to Sleep" books out there, I have my doubts. He does well in calming a newborn, but beyond the newborn stage, he offers very little. He really needs to consider changing the title to "The Happiest Newborn on the Block" to better reflect the content of the book. So if your baby is less than three months, this may work for you, if your baby is older, look elsewhere.

    5-0 out of 5 stars pretty darn happy family, July 31, 2002
    Love the book and the skills he teaches. I am a family physician and I agree with Dr. Karp that these skills are not taught in medical school or residency. His wrap (swaddle) is infinitely superior to the one we are generally taght on the wards. It had been frustrating to have very little to offer parents for inconsolable babies who were just fed, burped and diapered- yet they were still crying. Now I will recommend this book.
    Some people may be concerned that he advocates a Side/Stomach position for comfort, when the pediatric advice says that babies have to be put to sleep on their backs. However Dr. Karp's recommendation for these comfort positions are for when baby is awake or you are awake with your baby to keep an eye on their face. You wouldn't want to fall asleep with your baby in this position, or put baby down and leave them unattended in one of these positions.
    Also some people may be concerned that pacifiers can be used for the Sucking comfort measure. I believe that pacifiers are OK if the baby is breastfeeding well, and if you can hold off until they are one month or so old. One month old is about the age that "colic" often starts anyway. If your baby really likes to suck, and breastfeeding isn't yet well established, you can try your finger. Also, the sucking part often isn't even needed, as the other 4 S's work so well to calm your baby.
    Overall, highly recommended. I plan to give it to my other friends when they start their families.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Buy this before the baby is born, November 4, 2006
    As other have said this is a very helpful book, especially for the first 6-8 weeks. Good practical tips that work. We ordered it about 3 weeks after our baby was born and wished we'd done it earlier.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Thank you Dr. Karp! This really works!, July 6, 2002
    We have a 5 week old that I would consider a pretty good baby. He was sleeping between 2 1/2 and 4 hours between feeds at night but, consistantly fought his nap during the day. We knew he was tired but, he couldn't figure out how to put himself to sleep or back to sleep. My husband and I were really starting to doubt ourselves as parents. We didn't want to fall into the trap of rocking or walking our son to sleep.
    I read the parts of Dr. Karp's book that applied to our problems and within one day my husband and I had our baby sleeping during the day after every feeding without more that a minute of tears. Now our baby is waking one time only during the night to eat and then goes right back to sleep. Dr. Karp's 5 S's plan works like magic.
    With Dr. Karp's book we helped our son show us he is not just a good baby; he's an angel. ... Read more

    13. How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk
    by Adele Faber, Elaine Mazlish
    list price: $15.99 -- our price: $10.87
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0380811960
    Publisher: Harper Paperbacks
    Sales Rank: 721
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    You Can Stop Fighting With Your Children

    Here is the bestselling book that will give you the know-how you need to be more effective with your children--and more supportive of yourself. Enthusiastically praised by parents and professionals around the world, the down-to-earth, respectful approach of Faber and Mazlish makes relationships with children of all ages less stressful and more rewarding. Now, in this Twentieth Anniversary Edition, these award-winning experts share their latest insights and suggestions based upon feedback they've received over the years.

    Their methods of communication-illustrated with delightful cartoons showing the skills in action-offer innovative ways to solve common problems. You'll learn how to:

    • Cope with your child's negative feelings-frustration, disappointment, anger, etc.

    • Express your anger without being hurtful

    • Engage your child's willing cooperation

    • Set firm limits and still maintain goodwill

    • Use alternatives to punishment

    • Resolve family conflicts peacefully

    ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Not Just Kids! How to talk to Anybody!, March 28, 1998
    A therapist recommended this book to me when my son was 4 years old and I was going though a difficult divorce. I read the book and actually photocopied the basic ideas of each chapter and taped them to the refrigerator for easy reference. The ideas are simple and effective. They build self-esteem and keep the avenues of communication open between parent and child. My son is now almost 18, and we still have a terrific relationship. I've been following the practices in this book for 14 years and I can tell you it has made all the difference. Wherever my son goes, I hear from people who tell me how wonderful he is, how well-mannered, pleasant and charming. They all want to know what ever did I do to raise him this way. I tell them about this book. The more I move through life and the business world, however, I am struck how the same techniques enhance communication between adults in all aspects of life. This book should also be listed in the Business/Management section. It says all the same things the high-priced consultants say -- treat people with respect, do not deny their emotions, state the facts (only) and shut up and listen. This book also talks about giving praise and recognition, which makes it another reason to use it in real life, inside the family AND outside in the "real" world.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Alternatives to Yelling, Nagging, Threatening, Criticizing, September 4, 2002
    As a preschool teacher and parent, I found this book to be the major influence in forming my communication style with children. In fact, this book has given me the skills to communicate more effectively with everyone... my friends, my husband, my boss, and even my mother-in-law! When I changed my approach in how I spoke to them, they often changed their behavior. The logical, respectful strategies really work! My only criticism is that the format of the chapters does not always fascilitate quick 're-read' referral. For example, when I recently wanted to quickly look up a whining, or biting, or mealtime strategy for three of my preschoolers, I became frustrated and confused as to where in the book I had seen the information. These topics were not listed in the index and I began to flip through the pages trying to find the stories and suggestions that I thought I remembered seeing somewhere. Therefore, I would also like to recommend another wonderful new book with the very same philosophy that is organized differently...for quick use on the spot for very busy parents. THE POCKET PARENT is literally a pocket-sized A-Z guide exclusively written for parents and teacher of preschoolers (2's, 3's, 4's, & 5's). It is loaded with hundreds of easy to find quick-read bullet answers (called 'sanity savers') to 40 common behavior problems of 2- to 5-year-olds. I recommend these two books for every mom and dad with a 2- to 5-year-old. Both books are permissive with feelings, but strict with behavior while preserving the dignity of both parent and child. Both books are full of humor and compassion from authors that have 'been there,' too. For help on the spot as well as long term understanding ...keep both books handy!

    5-0 out of 5 stars An Essential Text Which Belongs on EVERY Parent's Shelf, April 1, 2001
    If I could entice every new parent to read just one book, this would be it. Thousands of children's lives have been improved, and in some cases transformed, as a direct result of their parents reading this book and practicing its kid-tested, nonpunitive approaches to discipline. The authors have little time for abstract theorizing, concerning themselves with down to earth practical issues of parenting, using sensitivity, empathy, communication skills, and humor. This book is crammed with invaluable suggestions, techniques and ideas for parents committed to raising great kids without resorting to discredited, harmful, pain-and-fear-based methods of the past.

    This book is in its twentieth edition for a reason: these methods WORK. I personally know a mother who formerly used the harsh, punitive methods of James Dobson, only to find that her problems with her daughter became worse and worse over time rather than better. After she read "How To Talk So Kids Will Listen And Listen So Kids Will Talk" and put its suggestions into practice, she literally threw Dobson's volume into the trash. And after a year and a half, she told me her relationship with her daughter had improved so much that she'd previously had no idea that it COULD be that good. The fact that the problems she'd been having had vanished now seemed almost an afterthough compared to the deepening of their parent-child bond. Their communication had improved profoundly, opening up previously unguessed levels of richness in their relationship. "She is such a terrific kid," my friend once told me, and with genuine incredulity added, "I can't believe I actually used to HIT her!!"

    Another acquaintance of mine, who is raising two great kids using nonpunitive methods of the sort Faber and Mazlish recommend, summarized her entire philosophy in just one sentence: "I don't want obedient children, I want COOPERATIVE children!" I think the great majority of parents, if they thought about it, would realize that this is what they too would prefer. Faber and Mazlish show the way.

    This book appears at first glance to be a collection of nonpunitive discipline techniques, but it is actually much more: a whole new way of thinking about the parent-child relationship which transcends the permissiveness vs strictness continuum with an approach to parenting based on neither punishments nor rewards. Authoritarian methods use coercion to make the child lose and the parent win, while total permissiveness makes the parent lose and the child win. Faber and Mazlish's methods, on the other hand, show the way towards families in which everybody wins.

    Christopher Dugan

    5-0 out of 5 stars My four children and I are much happier now!, February 1, 2006
    My husband bought this book when our oldest child was 10. We realized we weren't communicating well and were frightened that we would lose our relationship altogether when she hit her teenage years. Well, the book was a godsend. The authors basically teach you how to treat your child like a capable and worthy person, when you may be treating them as irresponsible, unimportant, or unlikeable. They first convince you to stop criticizing your children for what they think or feel, and to acknowledge how they might be feeling when they tell things to you. I know this sounds touchy-feely, but acknowledging feelings doesn't mean giving your kids any leeway in their behavior. For example, instead of saying "You shouldn't be mad at your brother, he's only three!" you say "I can see that it makes you angry when he messes up your things. But yelling is not allowed in our house." or, "He's too young to understand how special those are to you, so how can we keep your things safe?" You let your child know you are paying attention to how they feel, BEFORE you focus on solving the problem.
    The second thing they emphasize is to make correcting behavior about the behavior, and not about the child. Instead of "Get your homework! You always forget things!" you just say, "Homework needs to go to school with you."
    One thing we had a problem with at first is that the authors do not support time-outs. We had always been big believers in consequences for behavior, and had relatively well-behaved children with the time-out method. Well, we gave it a try, and were amazed. We found that we were fully able to correct our children's behaviors without time-out at all. And in fact, they were happier and less disobedient in general when they weren't constantly being sent away from the family in disgrace. We haven't even been tempted to put anyone in time-out for almost a year. Most surprising, our 3-year-old COMPLETELY stopped throwing tantrums within about two days of our stopping time-outs. It was a dramatic change for a child who had always been a little difficult to handle.
    Our oldest was slower to respond (age has a lot to do with it, I think) and we found it much harder to implement changes for her. It was difficult to stop lecturing and blaming her. But we have, and we have a fantastic relationship! Other parents of kids the same age are surprised how well we communicate and how fun and friendly our relationship is. We still have the teen years to get through, but I'm much more confident they will be a success, as we know how to treat her like a capable, loveable, valuable person.
    Buy this book. End of story.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A must for all parents, December 9, 1999
    I first heard Adele Faber talk at a college near my home when I was pregnant with my first child. Everything she said made such sense! She really struck a chord with me. I immediately went out and bought this book, and read it cover to cover. I parent by the principals of this book, and I'm convinced my child is socially and emotionally happier and healthier because of it. I re-read it at least once a year, and always give it as a gift to new parents. This book is the "holy grail" of parenting, and anyone who influences a child's life, including teachers, babysitters, etc. should read this book.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Good book, but not as thorough as should be, May 22, 2001
    I just read this book and -- though it it's right on the money in its attitude towards childrearing -- it doesn't describe the mechanics of how the "listening" and "talking" skills work as well as Thomas Gordon's Parent Effectiveness Training (P.E.T.). P.E.T. has a chapter called How to Listen so Children Will Talk and another called How to Talk so Children Will Listen. I wonder how the autors of this book got away with borrowing the title for their book straight out of some chapters in another (the original P.E.T. was published years before -- the one at stores now is a new edition).

    Lest it sound like I'm slamming this book, truth is it's not a bad read at all. But for an in-depth explanation of how these skills can be put to daily use, I'd go for P.E.T. Better yet, read both.

    Even better yet, first read Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Goleman to get an idea WHY these skills are so important to a child's development, then follow it up with P.E.T. and this book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars This book works wonders even for kids who can't talk., July 25, 1999
    I am a psychologist and mother, with a 6 year old autistic son. I first read this book when he was about 18 months old, and I waited patiently and eagerly for him to begin talking. He didn't... and didn't... and didn't... because one of the hallmarks of autism is a language delay. It would be another 3 years before I really knew what his voice sounded like. Nonetheless, this book was a godsend for us, because, really, it teaches parents how to read and respond to their children's emotions, no matter what modality they use to communicate them. And what my child needed more than anything else was to have someone who could understand how he was feeling, and give words to those feelings, because he could not. "How to Talk So Kids Will Listen" gave me the tools to hear him and help him, even though he was not talking.

    Now, at age 6, he is talking a lot, reading even more, and is a happy, joyful, confident child, far from the stereotype of his disability. I believe that much of his positive emotion and self-esteem comes from knowing that his feelings are understood and respected, despite the communication barriers we face. Those are gifts I was able to give him because of the strategies I learned from "How to Talk..." We still have a long road to travel, but so does every parent. But rest assured, ALL of Faber and Mazlish's books will be making the journey with us.

    5-0 out of 5 stars I've seen changes for the better so quickly, May 29, 2003
    It's only a few weeks and my daughter has responded so positively to this method of parenting.

    Maybe I shouldn't be so quick to judge since it's been such a short time, but I'm just so excited I feel like I found a pot of gold.

    It's not like my daughter was such a problem child before. She is almost five. She has been a little on the hyper side since she was born. As she has gotten older it has been getting more and more difficult to get her to cooperate, participate, or communicate at home or in preschool. I was desparate to find something that might reverse the trend before it became a real problem.

    Just as one example... It has always been difficult to get her to clean up after herself. She loves to use scissors and she makes a mess with scraps of paper ending up all over the house and in the baby's mouth. Yesterday, I watched as she cut out a circle from a piece of paper. She put the paper with the hole in it on the table and brought the circle to me to look at. After I admired the circle I said "I noticed you put the piece of paper you cut this from on the table. That was very tidy of you." She smiled and ran back to the table. She noticed there were a few pieces of paper on the floor she had dropped previous to this. She picked them up and put them on the table. She's never done that before without me telling her and usually having to repeat myself over and over! She didn't even look back at me to see if I was watching.

    In general she seems more relaxed (i.e. not as hyper), happier, and much more confident. I even noticed this morning when I took her to preschool she at once ran over to play with her friends, rather than hanging back shyly and waiting for one of them to come to her like she always has in the past. That was always painful for me to watch. Today, it was so beautiful, I had a lump in my throat.

    It's not that I think that my parenting style before this was so terrible. For example I always tried to be understanding before, but this book explained to me that some things I did that I thought were understanding were actually not.

    For example, sometimes my daughter doesn't like some clothes in her closet, even if she helped me pick it out. In the past, I'd say sweetly "You don't like it? It's such a pretty dress. You told me you liked it before. That's why I bought it for you. I don't understand. Tell me why don't you like it now?" I thought I was being very undertanding because I would say it in a sweet pleasant voice and give her the opportunity to explain her side to me. But the end result was always that she would become agitated and she wouldn't wear the dress that day and not for a long time until she forgot she told me she didn't like it. Now I say something like "Oh, you've decided you don't like it anymore. Do you remember when you helped me pick it out? You liked it then, but I see you've changed your mind. Well, I still like it. I think it is so pretty. Maybe you'll change your mind again one day and you'll like it again. So I'll just put it back in the closet just in case." Sometimes the very next day she declares to me that she has changed her mind and she wants to wear the dress that day.

    Similarly, I always tried to praise whenever I caught her doing something well, but this book has taught me more effective ways to praise and how not to criticize (which I realize only now how much I was doing).

    I'm so excited, I went out and bought a few other books that explain this type of parenting, like "Parent Effectiveness Training." I haven't read them yet, but when I do, I'll try to write a review.

    4-0 out of 5 stars True to it's title, September 1, 2001
    I thought this book might be about how to use praise and language to avoid facing discipline issues with children but it is not like that at all. It teaches parents to be authorative and send the right messages without micro managing their children. The suggested changes are fairly straight forward and common sense, but may require some practice. Fortunately thare are many well illustrated examples and practical exercises to reinforce these ideas. This book stictly sticks to the topic of comunication and establishing cooperation which makes it an excellent supplement to any parents existing parenting style. Teaches mutual respect without surrendering parental authourity. A very good read.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A real how-to resource, May 7, 2005
    As the mother of a 4 year old and trying 3 year old I had reached the absolute boiling point. At night as I replayed the day's events, I realized that all I had done was scold and yell all day. It was exhausting and depressing. I know better than that, but somehow I just couldn't figure out how to 'do' better than that. This book is clearly written and very specific in teaching you ways to interact with your child. You can take statements verbatim from the text and use them in real life. My unbearable younger child has been transformed into a sweet, inquisitive child, and I have been transformed into a tolerant, patient mother who ends each day with a smile.
    Perhaps, like me, you're sceptical that any resource (let alone a book) could make such a difference. If you feel as worn down and frustrated as I did when I bought it, what do you have to lose?

    * One note about using the book for reference later. There are 6 pages that have reminder notes with subject headers and bullet points. The book suggests that you copy them and put them where you can see them. I actually did this. I refer to these cheat sheets constantly when I'm looking for the right thing to say or a refresher on a particular concept. ... Read more

    14. 1-2-3 Magic: Effective Discipline for Children 2-12 (Advice on Parenting)
    by Thomas W. Phelan PhD
    list price: $14.95 -- our price: $8.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 1889140430
    Publisher: Parentmagic, Inc.
    Sales Rank: 798
    Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    This revised edition of the award-winning 1-2-3 Magic program addresses the difficult task of child discipline with humor, keen insight, and proven experience. The technique offers a foolproof method of disciplining children ages two through 12 without arguing, yelling, or spanking. By means of three easy-to-follow steps, parents learn to manage troublesome behavior, encourage good behavior, and strengthen the parent-child relationship—avoiding the "Talk-Persuade-Argue-Yell-Hit" syndrome which frustrates so many parents. Ten strategies for building a child’s self-esteem and the six types of testing and manipulation a parent can expect from the child are discussed, as well as tips on how to prevent homework arguments, make mealtimes more enjoyable, conduct effective family meetings, and encourage children to start doing their household chores. New advice about kids and technology and new illustrations bring this essential parenting companion completely up-to-date.

    ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars No Magic, but: Sane, Simple, Quick - with no yelling. Yay!, April 24, 1999
    I listened to the tape of this book while I commuted. In less than a week I was ready.

    Within 5 minutes our son understood the new 'rules of the game'. Within 2 days we had a more sane house. Yes, really.

    The discipline of the old days was 'spank your kid', and many of us reject this. The problem is that there wasn't a replacement that worked. So some parents keep spanking, some parents just yell all day. Either way, it's not a happy feeling of control.

    The basics of the 1-2-3 method are simple, kid-understandable, quick-to-implement, & quick to explain. (So you can even get care-takers, teachers, cub-scout leaders in on the game - to have some consistency.) But don't kid yourself - the real value is in understanding all of it.

    I don't believe I'm actually writing this but - just try it and you'll be a believer too.

    I loved the audio tape especially. In the first few minutes of the tape, the initial '1-2-3 Magic' is revealed. I wanted to start that day. Then examples, tactics for multiple kids and reinforcement follow. All of it is key to recognizing your kid's techniques for handling YOU, and creating the sane environment we all wish for.

    OK, life still isn't perfect, but this information goes a very long way to getting you out of the nightmare you might be in.

    I've bought copies for my sister, my friends, and my church. Every time I see a screaming parent and a crying kid, (or a nasty, defiant kid), I wish I had the nerve to give them a copy.

    No, I don't work for the author, but I sure would like to thank him. ;-)

    5-0 out of 5 stars I wish I had read this book months ago!, August 3, 1999
    We had tried everything to try and show our 3 year old son who is in charge. We could'nt go to restaurants (or almost and public place for that matter) without it ending in a meltdown and being bitten, pinched and hit by our son. Even at home if he didn't get his way he would bite/hit/pinch/scream. We agreed not to spank, but found ourselves yelling often. Many days I ended up in tears. My son's preschool teacher recommeded this book. I stayed up almost all night one night reading it, and put it into action. It has changed everything! Not only does the counting method really work (I had sort of used my own counting before, but I wasn't following the "no talking no emotions" rule), but we just feel more in charge and in control, which our son seems to sense and respond to. He is much better behaved all the way around, but if he does have a meltdown it is gone right after "that's two". I can't believe what a difference this has made in my house!

    5-0 out of 5 stars There Is No One Single Magic Trick For Effective, June 12, 2003
    Tom Phelan has indeed written a sensible, easy to read, discipline book that clearly explains his 1-2-3
    Magic theory designed for parents of tots-gradeschoolers. As a veteran preschool teacher, many of the parents of my own students over the years have found success with Phelan's techniques. However, some conscientious but frustrated moms and dads admitted to me that they found themselves between a rock and a hard place as they reached '2 and 3 quarters', '2 and 7 eighth's', etc ...unable to change the behavior of their sometimes annoying, disrespectful, uncooperative kids. Not to
    worry...Although your career as a magician may fall short of your goal, you are not doomed to be labeled an ineffective disciplinarian. It has been my experience, both as a parent and teacher, that there is no one single discipline approach that works every time, for every kid in every family. Although I
    totally respect 'the count' in this book, I strongly encourage parents to seek out an assortment of strategies that for whatever reason might be a better fit at a particular moment, in respect to age, personalities and parenting style. If you have young kids (2's, 3's 4's,and 5's) who are literally driving
    you towards your wits' end with such things as their bad words, 'I hate you's', hitting, whining, parent deafness, tantrums, lying, 'gimmes', mealtime and bedtime refusals, I suggest checking out "The Pocket Parent", a quick read A-Z guide, loaded with hundreds of fast answers and tips to try. The bullets of information (called 'sanity savers') are written
    exclusively for preschool behavior and are based on a solid philosophy that maintains a real sense of concern for the needs and feelings of both children and their parents. I highly recommend both books for a variety of workable discipline options that parents (and preschooler teachers) can choose from while trying to remain sane in the process!

    5-0 out of 5 stars It will seem like magic, May 17, 2004
    Part of what makes Phelan's now very well known system work is that, whether one is cooking rice or disciplining children, it's essential to have a method, the simpler the better. All effective methods rely first and foremost on how they guide us away from reactive and emotionally-based behaviors and keep us on the proper path. Note well that Phelan's method requires the parent to understand that "Too Much Talking" and "Too Much Emotion" by the parent will lead to failure. Understanding why this is so is the key to understanding why Phelan's method is so effective.

    Usually parents get caught in the trap of explaining or justifying their prerogative. This can be done once: clearly I am the adult, and not only is it my responsibility to guide your development, but, because I have been where you are and understand your situation--mainly frustration at not getting what you want--it is I, not you, who are in a position to make the right decisions. Period. Indeed, this doesn't even have to be said once. Children understand, with or without realizing it, that Mom and Dad know better than they do.

    So any sort of "talk" is not only superfluous but may obscure what has happened, namely that the child has done something wrong and the parent wants it stopped. Furthermore, if you talk, the child talks and the lesson is diluted.

    Even worse is for the parent to get emotional about disciplining the child. It's your job, do it and don't get worked up about it because discipline is just a technique in the larger socialization process. If you allow yourself to become emotional, you muddy up the waters and detract from the business at hand.

    Phelan's 1-2-3 Magic technique works and is easy to learn and implement. If you are an ineffective disciplinarian, this book will literally change your life. My daughter and son-in-law use this method and I can tell you without it they would be foundering about, and their ability to guide my grandsons would be weakened. Never forget however that what children respond to is fairness, even-handedness, and the love that is implicit in a sincere desire to help them become fully realized human beings. Or, as Phelan succinctly puts it: "...children respond because they know Mom or Dad means business." (p. 50)

    Just a quick word on this "meaning business." If you say "that's two and a half" and "that's two and three-quarters," you are NOT getting down to business. You are demonstrating that you aren't sure yourself that you are right while proving that you are unreliable. Phelan warns against this all too common parental trap.

    Note too that there is no corporal punishment involved in Phelan's method. In today's world of the "professional parent" (as I like to dub my daughter and son-in-law) it is axiomatic that one does not hit or slap a child. But why? Of course violent behavior only begets violent behavior, but more than that, not hitting protects the parent from going too far. Hitting leads to more hitting. But if one never hits to begin with there is no danger of escalation. Only foolish and lazy parents hit their children. Phelan's method is an extension of this wise understanding.

    The devil is in the details of parenting, you say? Yes, and in this very well written (the phrase "clear as a bell" definitely applies), you will get the details of how the method is applied in many situations and circumstances. Wondering how to put the child in "time out" at the supermarket? Phelan goes into that. What about the difference between "stop that!" and "do that"? It's one thing to get a child to stop doing something wrong. It's quite another to get the child to actually do something that needs to be done, like clean her room or do her homework. Phelan explains the difference between these two problems and how to deal with them.

    Here's a another question: should the child have to apologize for what he did? Phelan warns that "many apologies are really exercises in hypocrisy." (p. 54) The child is forced to apologize for hitting his sister, but he really feels that the apology is just part of the punishment. She hit him first and she deserved it. The fine points of the murky psychology of retaliation must wait for the older child to emerge. Right now, you just stop the hitting, period.

    Finally, what to do in public? Phelan devotes an entire chapter to that, and basically he says you have to bite the bullet and realize that the future character of your child is more important than any embarrassment you may experience from "counting" your child in public. Once you let the child know that being in public is no different than being at home, the child will behave. However if you let it be known that you are "vulnerable" when you're out in public, the child will immediately take advantage. Children love to test. They need to test. That's how they figure out their world.

    Part of the reason this book is so polished and Phelan's methods so precise is that "over the many years of developing" his program parents have taught him how to handle tricky situations so that he now has it all covered. Also clear is Phelan's understanding of children and their needs, and the obvious affection he has for them. As he says (after you have initially explained that you are going to begin using the 1-2-3 counting method): "Expect the kids to sit there and look at you like you've just gone off your rocker." (p. 68)

    Bottom line here is: if you are not aware of Phelan's very effective technique, do yourself and your children a favor and get this book.

    2-0 out of 5 stars Didn't work so well for us, March 30, 2006
    I was really excited about this book when I first read it. It worked really well - at first. After a couple of days, the behavior was better and we didn't even have all that many time-outs. After more than a year, though, the enthusiasm for this system of discipline and direction has waned on all sides. My kids weren't responding to the counting as well as they did at first, and, to be perfectly honest, my heart just wasn't in it anymore. I agree with the idea that you shouldn't try to talk with the child about what they're doing wrong while you're trying to stop the behavior. They need to understand that they should stop as soon as Mom or Dad says "stop". However, I also think that there needs to be some sort of discussion at some point about why you wanted them to stop, and this wasn't suggested anywhere in the book. Although we did incorporate this into our discipline routine ourselves, it is something that I think is seriously lacking in this book.

    I have several friends who swear by this book, but it just didn't cut it for us. I would recommend trying it out for yourself to see whether it will work for you. If not, "Parenting with Love and Logic: Teaching Children Responsibility" by Foster Cline and Jim Fay is a great book that incorporates all the things we felt were lacking in this one.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The only thing has worked for this parenting book addict!!!, September 14, 2006
    I have read over a dozen parenting books including Playful Parenting, Easy to love, Difficult to Discipline, Picking Your Battles, Kids, Parents and Power Struggles, P.E.T. and Unconditional Parenting just to name a few. This though is the first book parenting book, I've ever reviewed, because it's the only one that has truly helped me.

    I've tried every possible approach w/ my 3 1/2 yr old and felt so hopeless that I even entered therapy to try to get at the root of my parenting difficulties. Well what I realized the real problem was that I was reading a lot of parenting books that while were wonderful in their idealistic views, were just not realistic. They were in fact causing me to view my daughter as a "little adult" and in turn making me and her crazy.

    Now things are very clear, I have a plan, she knows what to expect. For probably the last 1.5 yrs, I've been in yelling matches with my daughter at least once a day. And after reading this book, I have not yelled at her even once for almost 2 weeks now. I'm enjoying my daughter so much for the first time since she was a baby and she in turn seems much happier and secure now that I am the confident mother she so desparately has been needing all along.

    Anyway, if you rather have a straightforward plan that anyone can implement rather than an abstract theory that takes the patience of a saint to stick to, then this book is for you!!

    3-0 out of 5 stars Mixed feelings, April 20, 2007
    I really hesitated to write a review about this book because I have such mixed feelings about it. This book was recommended by a very respected friend, who is an excellent and effective parent. So much of what the book says makes sense. I really like that that the author focuses on approaching discipline calmly. He does not condone yelling and spanking. He explains how yelling and spanking in anger will make your child's behavior worse. Also cajoling, begging and arguing with your child is completely ineffective. I agree with all of this completely. He suggests that when you discipline your child you should remain as calm as possible. I have applied this to disciplining my own child and I can attest to the effectiveness of it. I also like that he makes a distinction between stopping undesirable behavior and promoting desirable behavior.

    Now for the not so good...This book has a really condescending tone that so many parenting books adopt and it drives me crazy! I think children understand a lot more than people realize. I don't think it's appropriate to never discuss their behavior with them as the book suggests. And frankly, I find counting every single offense to be unrealistic. I understand the concept behind it, but for us it just really doesn't work. Instead we make the request once and when she doesn't comply we will determine appropriate discipline. Sometimes time out is the best answer, but sometimes it isn't. You have to pick your battles.

    I think the actual magic of this book is explaining to frustrated parents that they really just need to calm down a bit and use a cool and level head when they are disciplining children. Additionally, the section on rewarding and encouraging good behavior is good. Positive reinforcement is one of the most important components of good discipline and one that is often neglected. For these reasons, I think it's a worthy book. And the counting technique is fine, but it's not the only way.

    5-0 out of 5 stars 2 BOOKS WITH PRACTICAL ADVICE THAT WORKS!, November 23, 2005
    Tom Phelan presented a discipline program recently to my school district. He was sensible...and we bought his book.

    His advice is practical and well tested. His book sites many specific examples of what our kids do and say and what WE can do differently to change THEIR behavior.

    He addresses discipline regarding 2 types of behaviors... "STOP" behavior (like bad words, hitting, whining and disrespectful attitude)and "START" behavior ( like getting the kids to do their homework, chores, clean up, use manners etc.)

    He emphasizes that "the Magic" it is not so much the counting of...1, 2, 3 but rather how you choose to say a calm yet athoritative manner so that the child knows the parent means business. He also talked about the importance of discussion outside the heat of the moment with the child either in a one-on-one discussion or a family meeting.

    Our 2-way communication with our children now involves more listening to one another and less lecturing. I realized that I had been doing the count all wrong expecting the magic to happen...threatening and screaming the numbers at the top of my lungs finding myself reaching 2 and 3/4...2 and 7/8 and feeling my kids were in total control and that I was a failure with the technique that was working so well for my neighbor.

    Listening to Dr. Phelan and reading his book has taught me how to use this method correctly and to my surprise it is actually now working with my 6 and 8 year old. If you have a toddler or preschooler like me, I found many more age appropriate positive discipline strategies in another complementary A-Z guide for parents of 2's, 3's, 4's and 5's...called "The Pocket Parent". Exclusively written only for this challenging 4 year age span, this book is chock full of hundreds of brief, specific bulleted suggestions and examples of handling the behaviors that drive you close to your wits' end! Both books are very compatible in philosophy and are worthy additions to your home library...POCKET PARENT for the little ones and 1,2,3 MAGIC for all ages.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Lots of Sensible Discipline Suggestions to Chose From, December 25, 2004
    I really found this book so helpful because it clearly offers a variety of specific strategies to try. We have chosen a few that have worked with our children, both for stopping bad behaviors and starting new behaviors. We now yell and nag much less. It has been hard work to remain consistent with our new approach...not exactly magic. We also recommend the discipline suggestions in "The Pocket Parent", organized as an A-Z guide of challenging toddler and preschool behaviors. Try some of the sensible techniques in these two compatible books that seem to be a good fit for your family.
    I'd call the positive change we experienced SANITY rather than MAGIC!!

    1-0 out of 5 stars treat children like lab rats, May 22, 2004
    Imagine being very angry at your friend and they in turn say to you as you express yourself.. "that's one" continue to express your angry..."that's two"..."that's three...take a five minute time out". I would personally find it very frustrating and thankfully it never happens like this the real world. So why inflict this on your children? By using this system for several years we cut our son off from expressing his feelings constructively. If any anything this system only escalated the power struggle and fueled acrimony in our relationship with our son. This simplistic approach to paretning degrades and demeans the child and the parent, precluding possibility of a positive adult relationship relation with your child as they grow up . I am very sad about what we did following the 123 Magic approach. It's hard to believe this approach has any credence whatsoever. An example of the 123 Magic approach: giving children money every hour they behave in a car keeps them quiet but it also trains them to that they get paid for good behavior(not true in the adult world), puts the focus on parental approval and does not foster the inner discipline teenagers and adults need deal with the challenges of life. The books that have helped us create positive relationships with our children and foster inner discipline include the following: The Parent Handbook & Raising A Responsible Child, Don Dinkmeyer; How To Talk So Kids Will Listen & Siblings Without Rivalry, Adele Faber; Kids Are Worth It! Barbara Colorosso, Children: The Challenge, Rudolf Dreikurs; Seven Habits of Highly Effective Families, Stephen Covey. Save yourself the mistakes we made; don't buy 123 Magic. We are so proud of our parenting now and so happy with postive family environment we have created with our children, based on the books listed above. ... Read more

    15. Back to Basics: A Complete Guide to Traditional Skills, Third Edition
    Hardcover (2008-04-17)
    list price: $24.95 -- our price: $16.47
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 1602392331
    Publisher: Skyhorse Publishing
    Sales Rank: 838
    Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    Over 100,000 sold! Now newly revised and up to date, with over 2,000 color photographs and illustrations.Anyone who wants to learn basic living skills—the kind employed by our forefathers—and adapt them for a better life in the twenty-first century need look no further than this eminently useful, full-color guide. Countless readers have turned to Back to Basics for inspiration and instruction, escaping to an era before power saws and fast food restaurants and rediscovering the pleasures and challenges of a healthier, greener, and more self-sufficient lifestyle.

    Now newly updated, the hundreds of projects, step-by-step sequences, photographs, charts, and illustrations in Back to Basics will help you dye your own wool with plant pigments, graft trees, raise chickens, craft a hutch table with hand tools, and make treats such as blueberry peach jam and cheddar cheese. The truly ambitious will find instructions on how to build a log cabin or an adobe brick homestead. More than just practical advice, this is also a book for dreamers—even if you live in a city apartment you will find your imagination sparked, and there's no reason why you can't, for example, make a loom and weave a rag rug. Complete with tips for old-fashioned fun (square dancing calls, homemade toys, and kayaking tips), this may be the most thorough book on voluntary simplicity available. 2,000 color photos and 200 black-and-white illustrations
    ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars A traditional skills primer.
    A primer on self-reliance and rural skills, this is a large-format book of 456 pages lavishly illustrated with photographs and drawings, about half in full color. Here are 57 subjects, many with subsets, as in gardening, which includes information on soil, cultivation methods, making and using a greenhouse, and specific information on many veggies, herbs, fruits. Some presentations are simplistic, like telling you how to find and evaluate a farm or can produce in only four pages. Building and using a smokehouse gets one page. Using dairy products butters ten pages. Woodworking and furniture making nail down thirty pages. Build and decorate a house and the chairs, tables, beds to furnish it. Build a springhouse, a dam, a well, a water system. Grow vegetables, fruits, grains. Raise bees, fish, chickens, ducks, geese, rabbits, hogs, sheep, goats, cows, horses. Make cheese, maple syrup, beer, wine, bread, soap, candles, baskets. Cook with wood. Spin yarn, use natural dyes, make cloth, quilts, rugs, hammocks. Learn tanning and leather work, tinsmithing, blacksmithing, toolmaking. Celebrate harvest and holidays with traditional decorations, recipes, toys, games, dances. Learn camping, hiking, fishing, canoeing, snowshoeing, skiing. Whew! This book will keep you happily occupied for several decades.

    5-0 out of 5 stars back to basics
    i was given this book over 15 years ago. it has become my "bible" for basic skills. we refer to this book at least once a week for advice and instruction - and always manage to find what we're looking for! it does more than touch on subjects! you get in-depth instructions with pictures to guide you through such things as building a foundation and canning your own garden goods. my copy is well-worn from much use! i treasure this book and all the things i've learned from it. for those out there who wish to live more self-sufficiently, you must have this book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Best of Basics...
    This was a really interesting book and I got a whole more than I expected. This book covers all kinds of traditional skills from chopping wood, building houses, plowing fields, food preparation, and so on. Just about anything you can imagine on everyday life skills from days long gone.

    The bonus part to this was that it included a lot of modern day adaptations and applications for these skills. It could be a useful how-to manual for those that want to live a more simple life. It also includes a description of alternate eco-friendly fuel sources

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Wealth of Practical Information

    My grandparents owned the first edition of this book years ago and I read it almost every time I was over at their house. When I saw it was updated, I bought my own copy. This is a how-to tome par excellence! In these pages you can learn to go far toward practical self sufficiency. Just about anything and everything you could ever seek to know regarding hands-on survival skills is explained inside this book. It's useful information for everyday life and a potential lifesaver in times of crisis. In here you can learn how to start fires under any weather conditions, make your own shoes from scratch, build furniture, houses, boats, find out how to raise animals, grow gardens and survive diasters. I feel more confident in my ability to get by in almost any situation than I did before I re-discovered this pragmatic classic. Knowledge, as they say, is power.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great book
    Not a step-by step guide, but usually has enough info on a particular subject to get you started. Some topic are covered in detail, like making braided rugs, while others understandably are only given a cursory review, such as building construction.

    Tons of topics, with enough info to get you headed in the right direction for most, but you'll obviously want to get more detailed info on any of the more complex tasks they descibe. ... Read more

    16. People of Walmart: Shop and Awe
    by Andrew Kipple, Adam Kipple, Luke Wherry
    list price: $12.99 -- our price: $10.39
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 1402250711
    Publisher: Sourcebooks
    Sales Rank: 551
    Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Tons of –  

    • New Photos!
    • Bad Decisions!
    • WTF Moments!

    Plus –

    • Fan Stories!
    • Celebrities!
    • Goats!

    As Americans, we hold these truths to be self-evident: We will shop. And when we do, especially at our favorite supercenter, we will wear and do the most bizarre things possible.

    From the wildly popular website, this photo collection of Americans in their natural shopping habitat (70 percent of which is brand new and never before included on the website) presents people of all shapes and sizes wearing and doing everything imaginable in full view of their fellow shopping public. Plus, for the first time brand-new fan-submitted stories offer the most random experiences you can imagine!

    So welcome to a world where no shoes and no shirt are no obstacles, where parking lots are filled with dead deer, Bengal tigers, and old men in thongs riding bikes. Once you meet the People of Walmart, you are sure to fall in love.

    1 ... Read more


    4-0 out of 5 stars Pretty good but not every photo is classic PoWM material., September 3, 2010
    I enjoy People of Walmart, but just like on the site, some of the featured photos are not that funny. The book had many "classics" (like the back boobs photos, obnoxious t-shirts, scary hair, makeup and clothes, and Willy the Pimp) but some of the others were sort of meh. I assume that perhaps there were some rights issues with some of the photos (getting permission to publish) but I really don't know. And some of the stories were not that outstanding either. (The story about the Subway employee reporting on the weird sandwich a customer ordered every day was my favorite.)

    I'd say that for me, perhaps 75% of the content was PoWM at its best.

    The thing is, I suspect that everyone who gets this book will have a different idea of *what* 75% (or whatever percentage they designate) is classic PoWM. So because of that, I'd say that for most fans of PoWM, this book has *enough* of the good stuff to make it worth buying, but don't expect that every photo is a winner, because I don't think it is.

    The book looks nice, with raised lettering on the cover and decent quality paper. (It doesn't look shoddily made or cheap.)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Escape into laughter, September 16, 2010
    I have to say, WE NEED TO MAKE FUN OF OURSELVES MORE OFTEN! If we can't make fun of ourselves and have a laugh then what the heck can we make fun of these days. I love the site and thought the book was well put together along with some seriously funny new pictures and stories. I will grab a few copies for friends and family this holiday...what the heck, we all need a good laugh! Good job guys and thanks for the escape from reality.

    4-0 out of 5 stars funny as hell!, September 16, 2010
    Just like the website but better because I can take it with me everywhere! I visit the website at least 3x per week and this book is a great campanion piece. Small size but definitely worh it, the picture quality is great and the captions as usual are deadon. If you like the website, buy the book it is funny and great for gifts.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Bridget's Review, November 9, 2010
    OMG! People of Walmart is hilarious! I have seen my share of crazy sights at Walmart (and possibly been a crazy sight myself). The pictures are literally laugh-out-loud funny. This is the perfect stocking stuffer!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Scary like a car wreck., September 28, 2010
    You don't want to look but you will. Its nothing you haven't seen at your Wally World, but it sure is scary. Scary funny that is. What are these people thinking. Oh that's right, they're not thinking. Enjoy, it's the coffee table book for the new millennium.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Do not buy the kindle version! Just go to the dang site!, November 10, 2010
    I was on a vacation where I had poor internet and thought a little best of People of Walmart would pick me up. So I bought it, on Kindle. First, it loses a lot in the black and white. Second, the photos that made the book didn't seem any better than the average ones on the site. Third, it was over before it began, only took me about 30 minutes to get through it and/or get bored of it. Maybe as a coffee table it'd work out, but as a Kindle purchase no way!

    3-0 out of 5 stars I'm Never, Ever Going to Shop at WalMart Again...Never...Absolutely Never Ever!, September 25, 2010
    PEOPLE OF WALMART, SHOP & AWE is a 216-page collection of photographs, mostly from cell-phones, of WalMart shoppers in all their glory plus a few accompanying stories of those shoppers in action. Depending on your sensibilities, you'll probably find PEOPLE OF WALMART a hoot or appalling.

    The book showcases pix of people who are oddly-outfitted, sporting bad hairdos, wearing weird make-up, etc. Many are grossly overweight with fat rolls galore, back boobs, etc. Then there's all the too-tight jeans shots, snaps of shorts that don't come close to covering what lurks below, undies showing photos, topless he-men with bulging guts, bad teeth, no teeth, butt cracks pix, boobs to the waist, hair in curlers, bad teeth, no teeth, weird tattoes, stupid T-shirts advertising 'I like it from behind,' etc., etc. Authors Adam Kipple, Andrew Kipple and Luke Wherry supply tongue-in-check captions.

    Sad to say, the people depicted in this 2010 Sourcebooks release share several characteristics. They obviously don't own mirrors. They don't have a working relationship with the concepts of style and taste. And they really need to do a reality check as far as their own body image goes.

    PEOPLE OF WALMART certainly delivers what it promised - WalMart shoppers in their natural habitat doing what comes naturally. The end product, however, definitely won't appeal to everyone's taste. Your call, folks.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Making Fun of Others = Amusement?, October 1, 2010
    I received this book in the mail and I just looked at it. It wasn't a book from Vine or from NYJBR both of which I write reviews for. I have no idea frankly why I was sent this book since I don't really review this type of book -- comedy, web-based.

    Primarily this is a collection of photographs taken by unidentified people in various Walmart stores around the USA. However I have no idea who supplied the commentary for each photo. Was it the person who took it? Kipple, Kipple & Wherry who are listed as co-editors of the book? There is also a handful of stories about events at Walmart which seem to be written by folks who believe they won't look foolish yet frankly they are often more foolish looking than those they are writing about.

    The book just strikes me as mean spirited. Looking at it alone, I had a frown on my face the entire time. Showing it to someone else allowed me to smile and giggle a bit. That's a problem because it means I was looking for permission to find the people in the photos amusing.

    Honestly they are just out shopping. Do we really need to make fun of them? How many of us might also end up in such a book? ... Read more

    17. Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters: 10 Secrets Every Father Should Know
    by Meg Meeker
    list price: $14.95 -- our price: $10.17
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0345499395
    Publisher: Ballantine Books
    Sales Rank: 760
    Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    In today’s increasingly complicated world, it’s often difficult for parents to connect with their daughters–and especially so for fathers. In this unique and invaluable guide, Dr. Meg Meeker, a pediatrician with more than twenty years’ experience counseling girls, reveals that a young woman’s relationship with her father is far more important than we’ve ever realized. To become a strong, confident woman, a daughter needs her father’s attention, protection, courage, and wisdom. Dr. Meeker shares the ten secrets every father needs to know in order to strengthen or rebuild bonds with his daughter and shape her life–and his own–for the better. Inside you’ll discover:

    • the essential virtues of strong fathers–and how to develop them
    • the cues daughters take from their dads on everything from self-respect to drugs, alcohol, and sex
    • the truth about ground rules (girls do want them, despite their protests)
    • the importance of becoming a hero to your daughter
    • the biggest mistake a dad can make–and the ramifications
    • the fact that girls actually depend on their dads’ guidance into adulthood
    • steps fathers can follow to help daughters avoid disastrous decisions and mistakes
    • ways in which a father’s faith–or lack thereof–will influence his daughter
    • essential communication strategies for different stages of a girl’s life
    • true stories of “prodigal daughters”–and how their fathers helped to bring them back

    Dads, you are far more powerful than you think–and if you follow Dr. Meeker’s advice, the rewards will be unmatched.

    “Reassuring and challenging . . . a helpful road map for concerned fathers [that] tackles difficult issues.”
    –National Review

    “A touching, illuminating book that will prove valuable to all of us who are fortunate enough to have been blessed with daughters.”
    –Michael Medved, nationally syndicated radio talk-show host, author of Right Turns

    “Dr. Meeker’s conclusions are timely, relevant, and often deeply moving. No one interested in what girls experience growing up in our culture today–and the impact that parents, especially fathers, have on the experience–can afford to miss reading this book.”
    –Armand M. Nicholi, Jr., M.D., professor of psychiatry, Harvard Medical School
    ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars A wonderful guide to active fatherhood and your much need participation in your daughter's life, October 30, 2006
    As the father of three daughters (and three sons), I had a strong reaction to this book. It is terrific in the way it guides and urges fathers to be active and involved in the lives of their daughters. It doesn't provide a list of detailed actions you must take to have a successful relationship or a healthy child. Instead, it provides ten needs that can best be met by you as her father as she grows into a wonderful woman and makes her own way in the world.

    When a father realizes the way her relationship with him and his with her defines so much of how she will define the male-female world in her life, it gives one pause. Daughters need heroes; she learns a lot about love from her father, she can learn important qualities such as humility, faith in God, and standing up for herself. How a father protects and defends her has a big impact on her self-image. The way a father demonstrates practicality and tenacity can provide a great example when hard times inevitably come. And he should be the kind of man he would like his daughter to marry.

    Above all, he needs to help her get connected and stay connected with life. Never let her drift into a shell and withdraw from the world. This can't be done by command. It is a participatory experience that requires the father as much as the mother.

    This is a fine book with lots of good anecdotes and examples. A great read for anyone still raising daughters and a terrific gift (if given the right way) to a new father of a little girl.


    5-0 out of 5 stars Even if you are already a great Daddy..., May 3, 2007
    The more you know; the more you know you don't know.

    This is a powerful book for fathers who are already great Dads... It will validate who you are and encourage you to keep doing what you are doing. It will help forge your mind around your absolute responsibilities as the father of a girl and young lady. It will remind you that baby girls, young ladies, and women have only ONE Daddy.

    I have read other father/daughter books, including Dr. Leman's book (which I also recommend in another Amazon review). Like all advice, one must temper the input from outside sources. Dr. Leman and Dr. Meeker's books, however, are treasures that you can simply gorge yourself on... without regard to having to sift the psychobabble and tenuous opinions with little research and/or validity.

    Dr. Meeker's book, in particular, is superlative from the standpoint of a no-holds barred, in-your-face reality check of the awesome responsibilities associated with being your daughter's Daddy. Whereas Dr. Leman's book was more of a semi-autobiographical and quasi-emotional journey of the Daddy-daughter relationship, Dr. Meeker's book is much more robust, profound, and, in some case, quantitatively advanced.

    Best of all, though, Dr. Meeker is a daughter; a former girl; a woman; and a doctor. She has lived the life of a Daddy's girl (not the spoiled type - but, rather, the type who can look back upon her youthful Daddy interactions with fond appreciation). She has also lived the life of a doctor who has talked with, counseled, and commiserated with many, many girls and young ladies... THIS is an insight worth a King's ransom.

    This book is very, very special. If you want to understand the touchy-feely side of how a Daddy affects his daughter's life, buy Dr. Leman's book. If you want to cover the full gamut of your superlative responsibility as a Daddy; if you want to delve deep into your daughter's eyes and see what she sees, wants, and needs... buy THIS book.

    By the way, I HIGHLY recommend giving this book to both genders, as well as any other adult male who has daughters.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Good book to add to your arsenal - some facts, some opinions., May 29, 2007
    I have a three-year-old daughter and thought this would be a good Doctor's guide about raising a daughter. I found it to be interesting and Dr. Meeker makes some geniune points about the psychological make-up of young women and girls (although she is Family M.D. and not a Psychiatrist or Psychologist).

    Some of the end tends to get a little preachy about God and the like, which you see coming over the horizon about midway through the book. Nevertheless, if there's one thing we know about people who are religious and those who are not, it's unlikely that a child-rearing book is going to convert you one way or the other; so, if you don't agree, that section won't kill you. I'm living proof.

    In my opinion, this is an enjoyable book with some very relatable anecdotes and a lot of food for thought about the oversexualized nature of pop culture and the dangers facing our daughters every day.

    As a father who tends to see things left of center in most cases, when it comes to youth (especially our daughters), I couldn't agree more.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The FATHER'S BIBLE to raising a daughter, August 11, 2007
    Every father should read this book, not only once, but every year. I have recommended this book to everybody I know with a daughter, and everybody has thanked me for the referral. My children are 3 years old and younger, and I learned a ton. Friends with older children and teenagers told me that everything Dr. Meeker said in the book has come true for their kids as well, once they start paying attention to her advice, following her recommendations, and paying attention to our daughters responses to our actions. Awareness is key, as the book points out.

    I think this book gets 6 stars, not only because it's well written, but because of how it changed my life. I think I'm a better person and will be a better father for reading this book. How do you put a value to such knowledge?

    Don't think twice, just buy this book. Every chapter is a gem. Fatherhood is underestimated and nobody seems to talk about how important it is. Is it not a manly thing to talk about how important it is to raise and protect your daughter? Look at fatherhood in this way - it is the ONLY job that only YOU can do! You are your daughter's protector and according to the book, her savior. Put your ego aside and admit that no matter what your job, career or profession is, someobody else can do exactly what you do or even better. If you died tomorrow you would be replaced in no time in the workplace. But what about your role in your family, and as a father? That will be a permanent loss. NOBODY can be the father to your daughter, however, except you, so why not read about how to do it right or how to do it better?

    Every man in the world will try to hit on, sleep with, or get something from our daughters except us fathers. We're the only men who our little girls may ever be able to truly rely on, that is, if you do what this book tells you to do. Just being a father by title isn't enough! You need to follow the advice from this book, otherwise you will be just another man in the world disappointing their daughters. As the book points out, you can actually do tremendous harm to your daughter if you don't follow the recommendations in this book. That puts a great responsibility on our role. As a professional, I've read hundreds of books and articles about how to do my job, which isn't nearly as important as being a father to my daughters. So, why not start reading about our real "most important job?"

    I know this review is a bit over the top, so I disclose that I have no relationship to the author or to the publisher and have nothing to gain for praising the book. I just want every father to be the best that they can be, and that will make every daughter better prepared for the world. I almost never write reviews, but this book is so amazing that I felt I owed it to us fathers out there and to our daughters, hoping to get at least one other person to buy the book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Stong Fathers, Strong Daughters, September 24, 2006
    My husband and I label this book as a "must read" for any daddy raising a daugther! We never realized the impact a father has on setting the course for his daughter's life until reading this book. It heightens the motivation to be that special man in your daughter's eyes. The author had a wonderful way of touching our hearts and opening our eyes to the role played by the father.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Attention, Fathers of daughters!, October 9, 2006
    Dr. Meg Meeker has written an important book for fathers in the 21st century. I purchased this book to pass on to a young father that I know and I'm hopeful his family will benefit from it.

    As a father of two daughters, I worked hard to perfect the "10 secrets every father should know" that Dr. Meeker writes about in her book. Fathers, it is crucial you understand how important you are to your daughter. Dr. Meeker points out that you are her hero and her first love.

    Dr. Meeker says, "Your daughter looks to you for guidance, whether the issue is what instrument or sport to play, what college to attend, or what to do about sex, drinking, and drugs. If she feels close to you, she's much more likely to make good decisions. If she doesn't feel close to you, all bets are off."

    I encourage all fathers of daughters to read this book. If you aren't a father of a daughter then buy a copy for someone who is!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Only for dad's who want their daughters to be emotionally stable with high standards, March 15, 2007
    I was dumbfounded when I read (the few) negative reviews of this book. It's unbelievable what some people will delude themselves into believing when the truth doesn't fit their agenda. If you're the kind of parent that thinks it's ok to let your 15 year old daughter's boyfriend spend the night with her in her room in your house "because it's safer and at least you know where they are", this book IS NOT for you. You have already made your (and her) bed and you will both have to lie in it and live with the consequences for the rest of your lives.

    However, if you cherish and value your daughter's innocence, positive attitude (that they are *all* born with until the world crushes it from them), love of life and bright, happy, healthy smile, this book IS for you. If you want her to grow up emotionally healthy and able to face the pressures that our parents never knew and therefore didn't know how to equip *us* to deal with, read this book, it will tell you how.

    This book will give mothers and fathers alike a crystal clear understanding of the emotional consequences (forget the medical consequences) of having sex too early and with too many partners and how to help your daughter stave off pressure. You can ignore and deny the consequences but that will not change the feelings of worthlessnes and yes, downright depression, that your daughter will feel if you, her parents, do not protect her from the onslaught that is our sexually charged society made up of hormonal teen (and pre-teen) boys who believe it is their right to take your daughter's innocence and your daughter's female friends that will tease her and call her a prude and a geek if she doesn't "give it up" to the guy she's been "dating" for a month.

    I am a mom and this book taught me so much about my precious girls and how to be a better mom. I taught me so much about my awesome husband and enabled me to understand and appreciate the traits about him that make him so valuable to our girls' healthy development. Things that I sometimes used to get annoyed and angry about that he would do in dealing with issues I now understand and even appreciate. I understand how he deals with things differently from me and why it is not only good but invaluable.

    Lastly, it taught me so much about myself. Burdens have been lifted from me that I have carried for years because, not only do I now understand the things I went through as a teen and preteen, but I am now equipped to help my daughter avoid the mental anguish that I experienced (and am still experiencing, so some extent). My parents were great, but our society changed so much and so fast from when they were kids in the 40's and 50's that they had absolutely no clue what they had to equip me with and protect me from, much less how to do it.

    If you are a parent (mother OR father) that cares desperately for your daughter and wants to keep her safe, healthy and happy - emotionally and physically - I think you would be hard-pressed to find a better book than this to help you reach those goals.

    As for those that think this book is "old-fashioned", I ask you, did we have the problems with teen pregnancy, skyrocketting STD's and teen suicide in the "old-fashion" days? These are the fruits of our "progress".

    Sorry this was so long, but this book has had a profound impact on me.

    4-0 out of 5 stars excellent guide, August 24, 2007
    This is an excellent book. A guide for fathering girls. It is a little redundant in making points but does illustrate how important certain things are in raising a daughter. Overall, a good book for a father to read if he is serious about raising his daughter to be a well adjusted young lady and about having a loving relationship with his daughter.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Worthy advice for Dads, July 17, 2007
    I ordered this book after a friend told me about seeing the author on EWTN, the Catholic TV channel. I have three sons who are fathers of daughters, and considered it might be a good read for them. I read it myself to be sure it wasn't too "religious", or too "anti-feminist", an impression I got from reading the jacket. The strongest aspect of the book is the author's experience as a therapist with young girls, elementary, middle and high school, and college. She repeatedly draws a connection between the depression, eating disorders, and confusion about sex she sees in her clients, and the quality of the girls' relationship with their fathers. I think she makes some really good points about what girls need from their Dads in this hard-to-grow-up-in culture we currently have. She does make a strong case for religious faith in the final chapters, but it didn't seem too "preachy." I have given the book to my oldest son, who has two daughters ages 11 and 6, and am awaiting his reactions.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A must have for current father's; great info for any girl's parent., June 7, 2007
    If your daughter is 2, or in my case 16; or if you're considering having kids (and therefore have the possibility of haveing a daughter), this book will lay the framework on what it is your daughter is looking for in a father, a man, and possibly your future son-in law. I'm not saying it will take all of the mystery out of being a Dad to your girl, but it unraveled years of questions I had about being a father, and helped me lay down better boundaries without feeling like I was being unfair. It in no way had me locking up my young teen daughter, but it opened my eyes to what I needed to be looking for, and how to better protect her even from a distance. I'm much more comfortable with my girl, and what I say yes and no to after reading this book. ... Read more

    18. Be Prepared: A Practical Handbook for New Dads
    by Gary Greenberg, Jeannie Hayden
    list price: $15.00 -- our price: $10.20
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0743251547
    Publisher: Simon & Schuster
    Sales Rank: 744
    Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    An indispensable survival manual for guys entering the trenches of fatherhood, Be Prepared is loaded with one-of-a-kind insights, MacGyver-esque tips and tricks, and no-nonsense advice for mastering the first year as a dad.

    Finally, a book that teaches men all the things they really need to know about fatherhood...including how to:

    • change a baby at a packed sports stadium

    • create a decoy drawer full of old wallets, remote controls, and cell phones to throw baby off the scent of your real gear

    • stay awake (or at least upright) at work

    • babyproof a hotel room in four minutes flat

    • construct an emergency diaper out of a towel, a sock, and duct tape

    Packed with helpful diagrams and detailed instructions, and delivered with a wry sense of humor, Be Prepared is the ultimate guide for sleep-deprived, applesauce-covered fathers everywhere. ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Be Prepared, August 13, 2006
    At first glance, Be Prepared looks like it might be a joke book. The bright yellow handbook format cover shows a child in a backpack strapped onto a smiling, manly fellow in a lumberjack shirt. Front backpack straps replace the man's suspenders, baby bottle, rattles and other toys are at his waist, toolbelt style, and a pacifier dangles from a strap in his fingers. It captures attention.

    Likewise, the inside of the book captures attention with well designed layout and graphics. Readers recognize the content, presented with abundant wit and style, is playful but not a joke. This is a creative, purposeful production with solid, helpful information delivered in fun, maybe over-the-top, masculine terms, but quite real.

    With useful, pithy information in easily assimilated chunks, and a fun filled, `can-do/here's how', unsentimental attitude, this nuts-and- bolts manual attracts expectant and new dads the way their beloved Worst-Case Scenario books used to, but with more usable material that really will help prepare them for parenting, appreciate their baby, and boost their confidence. Dads who know how to care for their infants are more likely to participate in care and strengthen parent-child attachment from the start. This interesting book imparts the preparatory knowledge well indeed.

    It is organized in five general sections by age, from newborn to one year, with basic information about normal development and needs, and appropriate fatherly responsibilities and skills. Mindful, entertaining, diagrammed instructions for hundreds of such necessities as diapering, stimulating, soothing, bathing, swaddling, burping, reading Sports Illustrated with the baby, and recognizing types of crying, are laid out with humor and a decidedly masculine slant:

    " Place one of your large outdoor trash cans under the window of the baby's room . (If you live in the city, you can hang a bag from the rail of your fire escape.) Each time you get a dirty diaper, simply open the window and throw down a long range jumper; Once a day, you can go out and collect the air balls, but don't be surprised how fast you'll get the rhythm down. . . "

    " . . Studies have shown that the most effective rocking mimics the mother's walking pattern, which is approximately sixty rocks a minute. . . try reggae music. The beat is solid and steady, and it's got a natural buoyancy that will complement your rocking. And best of all, most reggae music cycles at around sixty to seventy beats per minute, tailor-made to your baby's needs. (Bob Marley's Buffalo Soldier is almost a perfect sixty b.p.m.."

    WIthout being simplistic, this creative book actually will help dads get their parenting rhythm down, and will appeal to many men who otherwise would not read a book for new fathers. It's a good start.

    Authors Greenberg, a comedian, and Hayden,an illustrator/graphic designer, are parents of a daughter.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Fun, informative, and easy to read, November 27, 2006
    We just had our first baby last week. I picked this book up a couple of days ago and have been reading in short burst (as the book was designed for) with a book in one hand and a sleeping baby in the other.

    The content is fun; engaging to read for both parents. It also does a great job of zoning in on the "important" stuff that new dads want to know, rather than hundreds of pages that are great info, but simply would never get read by most new parents during their haze of sleep deprevation.

    5 well deserved stars.

    4-0 out of 5 stars A new dad's breath of fresh air., April 24, 2007
    This book isn't meant to be the be-all, end-all of new parent books, but if you're a new dad and are a bit overwhelmed by a) fatherhood and b) all the BOOKS about parenting, this is a great book to get. It's got great retro artwork, a loose style, a sense of humor (something you don't see much in parenting books), and (mostly) very sound advice and information, from what your brand new baby will REALLY look like to how to keep your almost-one-year-old entertained on an airplane....

    My kid just turned a year old and I implemented many of the bits of advice I found in this book. It was well supplemented by "The New Father" and by "What's Going on in There?", making a trio of books that runs the gamut from theory to practice, from micro to macro. This book ended up as a well-thumbed bathroom reader after I finished it.

    By the way, the website for this book has some activities: listen to the sound of a baby crying for several minutes (to help you acclimate if, perhaps, you're still "expecting"), dad exercises and more.

    5-0 out of 5 stars If You Buy Any Book, Buy This One, April 6, 2005
    All the other reviews have pretty much covered it -- this book is hilarious, kitschy, easy to read, and so incredibly practical. My husband loves it, and it's great for moms, too. This book just gets right down to the meat of the matter -- how to care for a baby, how to solve problems, how to be a supportive partner.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Baby-rific!, May 11, 2004
    I love this book! It's hilarious, and at the same time, unbelievably helpful. It captures a new dad's state of mind perfectly.

    There are illustrations everywhere, on how to do everything, like swaddling, burping, and babyproofing, and all these inventive ways to soothe a screaming baby, and how to keep yourself awake at work.

    I read a couple of other books for new dads, and my eyes started to glaze over. But this book was so much fun that I couldn't put it down.

    An added bonus: some pages in the book point you to a companion website where you can download audio files and video files and other helpful documents.

    Highly recommended!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Best Book for Dads, March 2, 2006
    It has humor and really great information. If your Guy won't read any other book, at the very least get him this one. I have bought it for 3 of my buddies, and they have all loved it.

    Computer Dude.

    5-0 out of 5 stars If you want to keep your sanity..., January 27, 2006
    Or at least laugh while you're losing it, this is the book for you. My wife had picked me up several parenting books, and they all had a tone that dad was an ignoramus that needed serious help. All were pretty dry to boot. I picked up this book while we were shopping for baby furniture. Thank goodness I did, because my wife had to be induced, and our daughter came a month early. I was terrified, but this book helped me get through. It has some great common sense suggestions, and manages to make you laugh through it (no small feat when you haven't slept in 3 days). I liked it so much that I went out and bought copies for 3 other guys I know who are either new or expectant dads. Much like the Boy Scout manual for scouts, this book should be at dad's side at all times. The only, minor, complaint I have is the topics tend to skip around a bit. Not bad, and it probably helps keep it light, as you don't get 15 pages on diapers all at once.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Not just the best book for new dads..., March 5, 2005
    I'm a new mother, fully equipped with the requisite stack of new-mother books. And you know what? I've gotten more useful information out of this one book of my husband's than any of those. In between the duct-tape diapers and taking the baby to happy hour, there's a lot of good common sense here.

    Plus, unlike the "humorous" books targeted toward women, this one is actually funny.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A MUST for New Dads!!!, May 18, 2004
    Have you ever seen the shocked look on the face of a new father? Seen him struggle to manage the new tasks facing him? Run out and buy Be Prepared as soon as you can. I have given this book to 3 new fathers this week and they have been delighted to receive a book written JUST FOR THEM! I have even witnessed a wife trying to wrestle the book from her husband. Be Prepared is both informative and funny. A great read for both new and 'old' dads. The learning never stops!

    4-0 out of 5 stars Good, Fun Book for Beginnner Dads, September 21, 2006
    This book is a great starting place if you are like me and are a first time Dad with absolutely zero experience dealing with babies. It presents really useful information and tidbits in an entertaining format for guys. The illustrations are quite amusing as well. Who knew that Bob Marley's 'Buffalo Solider' has a perfectly soothing rhythym that matches the baby's heartbeat and helps them relax? It is also contains tidbits on how to leverage your bundle of joy psychologically on others - catching relief at work etc. Things that guys need to know that they would never learn from your typical baby books. I particularly like the bit on how to powernap to minimize fatigue.

    If you are a guy and are clueless, take a crack at this book. If nothing else, you will be amused and I am willing to bet you will pick up ideas (and retain them) much faster than you would reading a library of your run-of-the mill baby books. I'm passing it on to my buds when they get their first crack at being dads. ... Read more

    19. Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy
    by Mayo Clinic
    list price: $21.99 -- our price: $14.48
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0060746378
    Publisher: Harper Paperbacks
    Sales Rank: 777
    Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    This new Mayo Clinic book on pregnancy provides you with practical information and reassurance on pregnancy and childbirth. Compiled by Mayo Clinic experts in obstetrics, it offers a clear, thorough and reliable reference for this exciting and sometimes unpredictable journey. This comprehensive book includes:

    • A month-by-month look at mom and baby
    • In-depth "Decision Guides" to help you make informed decisions on topics such as how to select a health care provider, prenatal testing options, pain relief for childbirth, and many others
    • An easy-to-use reference guide that covers topics such as morning sickness, heartburn, back pain, headaches and yeast infections, among others
    • Information on pregnancy health concerns, including preterm labor, gestational diabetes and preeclampsia, along with an overview on being pregnant when you have pre-existing health conditions such as asthma, diabetes or hyperthyroidism
    ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Superior to "What to Expect...", August 14, 2005
    Back when babies were just daydreams, I recieved "What to Expect When You're Expecting" (3rd ed.) from a pregnant friend who had an extra copy. Not knowing any better, I was quite pleased. Once I became pregnant and actually needed a guide, however, that changed. I found the book to be poorly organized, overly conversational and condescending in tone (especially given my plans to be a stay-at-home mom), and generally useless for anything other than instilling fear and paranoia. Most exasperating, though, was the "organization." Symptoms that can arise during varying parts of pregnancy are scattered haphazardly amongst the monthly chapters. This means that the book must be read cover to cover and all material retained in memory if hunting through the index and flipping back and forth between sections doesn't sound appealing.

    Enter the "Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy." Hallelujah! Not wanting to suffer through another mediocre guide to pregnancy, I looked through every book I could get my hands on, and this was the only one that satisfied my criteria. It is written by trustworthy professionals in clear yet -professional- language, it provides information on "pregnancy, childbirth and your newborn" in chronological order, and best of all, it contains separate sections entitled, appropriately, "decision guides for pregnancy, childbirth and parenthood," "pregnancy reference guide," and "complications of pregnancy and childbirth," each with a table of contents at the beginning of the section. Instead of having to take a wild guess at which chapter (or, more likely, chapters) cramping might have landed in in "What to Expect" or searching the entire index, I could find it, along with all the other things I might be wondering about, in the reference guide. Blessed simplicity!

    The "Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy" was the only book I needed. Once I found it, "What to Expect When You're Expecting" went back on the shelf and stayed there.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Best pregnancy book ever, May 6, 2005
    When we started trying, I bought a lot of pregnancy books. I am now towards the end of my first trimester and this book has been by far the best book I own on this topic.

    This book is extremely well organized, very informative and objective, and covers a wide range of topics from pregnancy to birth to breastfeeding.

    It is very easy to find what you are looking for. For each week, it explains what your body is going through, how your baby is growing and what emotional changes you could expect. In each month, there is a summary page that lists the problems you may have in that period and tells you when you should call your doctor. There are very nice drawings that show what your baby looks like and how big it is. (Some pictures are real size, for others the book tells what percentage of the real thing the picture is.)

    This book had answers to all my questions so far - and I should say, being a very curious first time mom, I had a lot of questions.

    Thanks and congratulations to Mayo Clinic.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Saved my Baby, October 10, 2005
    This is the best book out there by far. I had 3 other pregnancy books in addition to this one. This book answered every question I had during pregancy. And I had lots of them. At the week 38, I wasn't feeling great but I wasn't dying either. Just not feeling too well. I was having some minor chills, and NO fever. No other symptom. I opened the book and it said to call my OBGYN right away. I did so and my OBGYN wasn't too sure that it was urgent. My OBGYN then changed her mind 5 min later called me back and told me to go to the hospital for a quick checkup. My babies heartrate was over 200/min. They managed to stabilize him and 15 min his heartrate dropped to 80/min. Needless to say, my OBGYN did and emergency C-section. Had I not had this book and been so persistent with my doctor, my baby might be not be alive. Well worth every penny it costs.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Better than "What to Expect When You're Expecting", May 4, 2005
    This was the first book I got from the library when I found out that I was pregnant. Unfortunately, after numerous renewals, the library wants it back (the nerve!). I'm currently 15 weeks pregnant with my first child and so far this book has been great. It's from a trusted source and the week by week information on what's happening to the baby and possibly to me is more informative and detailed than other books that I have (i.e. "What to Expect...," "Your Pregnancy Week by Week," etc.) While this book has a lot of information dealing with specific circumstances, I just skipped the sections that didn't pertain to me. This book didn't scare the hell out of me like some of the others did. I am purchasing this book for my own "library."

    5-0 out of 5 stars The ONLY book you need, January 21, 2006
    I had bought several pregnancy books, including the Mother of All Pregnancy books and a couple of others, shortly after finding out I was pregnant. I kept getting disappointed by them - either the tone of the book would be off, or the information wouldn't be complete enough, or the book would be too cutesy for me to stomach. I got a recommendation from someone for this book, and after I read it I was sorry that I had wasted any money on other books. This is the only pregnancy book I need.

    It's hard to describe just how comprehensive the information is. If you, as a pregnant woman, need to know about something, it's discussed in this book. There's a large section on pregnancy discomforts and problems, but it's written in such a way that it's not depressing at all. The book is very straightforward about common pregnancy symptoms - if something hurts, they don't pussyfoot around, they say "this hurts" - but yet not negative about the experience of pregnancy either. The tone of the book is very straightforward, but yet upbeat at the same time. There are great week-by-week descriptions of what's happening with your baby, complete with illustrations, and in the week-by-week chapters there are also discussions of issues relevant to your pregnancy and suggestions about things you might want to think about or make some decisions about at that stage. There is VERY extensive information about prenatal testing, complete with great diagrams (this was the first book that showed me what really happens during CVS testing) and the information is presented in a neutral, nonbiased way that really aids decision-making when it comes to prenatal tests.

    One of the most helpful features of this book are the "decision-making guides" in the middle. These are short articles about things like breastfeeding, deciding to have another child, etc. that present the pros and the cons in a very balanced and neutral way, so that you as a parent can make decisions for yourself. The book recommends breastfeeding and provides detailed instructions on breastfeeding, but also provides plenty of information on formula feeding, complete with instructions on how to formula feed, which is something I have not seen in many other books. I plan to breastfeed but if you are not planning to, or find you cannot, this book has some great information for you about formula feeding.

    One other extremely helpful feature of the book are the charts for each trimester that help you decide when you should talk to your doctor about certain kinds of symptoms. I was surprised to find that some things I would think would be not that serious are actually things that warrant an immediate call to the doctor. I know I will be referring back to those tables over and over my entire pregnancy.

    Overall, I can't recommend this book highly enough. Loads of information to help you make the best decisions you can in your pregnancy. Don't bother buying any other book. This is the one you will go back to for information and reassurance over and over throughout your pregnancy.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Real great book!, October 17, 2005
    I borrowed many pregnancy books at the library and found this book from far the best and I decided to buy it! It is written by doctors and explains everything simply but also scientifically. Do not buy "what to expect when you are expecting" which is too alarmist and not as complete as the Mayo Clinic Guide.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Best of the bunch!, April 14, 2005
    I wanted a book written for intelligent adults that provided all the necessary information without the hype that this pregnancy will be an event around which the universe will revolve. (I've got plenty of time after my child is born to believe that.) After staring down the dizzying array of books on pregnancy, this was my pick. Not only do I love it, but my husband thought it was great and not too "jr. high sex ed class" oriented like many of the picture-heavy books. It's packed with information presented in a no-nonsense format that really lays out all your options for every aspect of pregnancy without taking sides. The organization is terrific with charts, graphs, and sidebars on all the things you want to know. The decision guides make you feel like you can handle anything that comes up. And it lets you easily find what you want whether it's weekly updates on how you and your baby are doing, guides for the big decisions about breastfeeding and circumcision, or specialized advice based on medical difficulties or multiple pregnancies. Great book from the Mayo Clinic!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Finally...A book for First timers and repeat moms!!!, January 11, 2005
    I am in my 3rd pregnancy, and bought the tried and true copy of 'What to expect when you're expecting.' Boy..was I dissapointed. It was so basic, missing so much info I wanted. AFter some research I heard about this book and went to take a look at my local store. All I can say is...WOW WOW WOW. It's not only a monthly guide to your body, emotions and baby..but a weekly. There is so much wonderful information..everything from snoring to in depth analysis of birth control for after delivery. They have a great section on dealing with depression before, during and after pregnancy. NOT JUST BABY BLUES. I was so impressed. I'd never read such great and easy to understand material. They have a huge reference guide for all the little and not so little aches and pains in pregnancy. Each month has a 'how soon to call your doctor' section for possible problems. It was nice that it didn't spend the whole time speaking only about working moms and prenancy (although it is covered) or insult my intelligence as a repeat mother. I highly recommend this to repeat and new moms alike. You will be so much more prepared than with the others I've read.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Very informative-not my favorite though, March 31, 2005
    I really liked this book and I think it is a wonderful reference tool. I am glad I had the book on hand. However, my favorite book during pregnancy was "Pregnancy Week By Week". I think it went more into detail as each week passed. And being a first time mom, I wanted to know every detail that was going on developmentally with my baby.

    5-0 out of 5 stars This is the book to get!, November 30, 2005
    During my last pregnancy, I bought "What To Expect When You're Expecting," but lent it to a friend afterwards. So, now, for this pregnancy I bought this book. I like this one much better! It is well-organized, easy to reference, and has consistent categories month-by-month. I would definitely recommend this as the book to get!!! ... Read more

    20. The Family Dinner: Great Ways to Connect with Your Kids, One Meal at a Time
    by Laurie David, Kirstin Uhrenholdt
    list price: $29.99 -- our price: $19.79
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0446565466
    Publisher: Grand Central Life & Style
    Sales Rank: 1253
    Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    The producer of An Inconvenient Truth, Laurie David's new mission is to help America's overwhelmed families sit down to a Family Dinner, and she provides all the reasons, recipes and fun tools to do so.

    Laurie David speaks from her own experience confronting the challenges of raising two teenage girls. Today's parents have lots to deal with and technology is making their job harder than ever.Research has proven that everything we worry about as parents--from drugs to alcohol, promiscuity, to obesity, academic achievement and just good old nutrition--can all be improved by the simple act of eating and talking together around the table.

    Laurie has written a practical, inspirational, fun (and, of course, green) guide to the most important hour in any parent's day. Chock-full chapters include: Over seventy-five kid approved fantastic recipes; tips on teaching green values; conversation starters; games to play to help even the shyest family member become engaged; ways to express gratitude; the family dinner after divorce (hint: keep eating together) and much more. Filled with moving memories and advice from the country's experts and teachers, this book will get everyone away from electronic screens and back to the dinner table.

    ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars The Family Dinner, October 19, 2010
    This book is a Home Run for anyone trying to get their kids to eat better (and with less meat). My teenagers ate the black bean burgers after complaining "it wasn't a burger" and actually asked for seconds! This is so much more than a cookbook, it is a guide about how to have more fun with your kids and make dinners something to look forward to. I personally like the gratitude section in the book where everyone goes around the table and says what they are grateful for. The pet peeve and idiosyncrasy game Laurie suggests can be a real eye opener about the people you know and love! I would highly recommend this book to anyone with kids or grandkids.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A must have book.... in every kitchen... and around the table..., October 28, 2010
    This book is one of a kind.... Not the kind that sits on the shelf but the one that will be passed around the table... The one that will get dirty by being around the kitchen.. The one that could finally break the ice and teach that food is not your enemy... Embrace the simplicity of it and have fun with it!!
    I know what I'll be giving for Christmas!!! Thanks Kirstin and Laurie.

    5-0 out of 5 stars No more solitary grazing at odd hours, October 16, 2010
    "The Family Dinner" should be number ONE on any bridal registration list. And, search no further, it is also the best present for a baby shower. You can even give a copy to the grandparents. This cook book works for all ages. It is informative, easy to use, fun to browse, bursting with healthy recipes and original tips. Furthermore, if you are looking for advice on a good divorce, check out page 188.
    As the French say: "� table!"...this book will bring everyone to the table...and make them stay there...the family dinner matters.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Family Dinners Should be Delicious AND FUN!, October 14, 2010
    Finally a practical book for the kitchen (or kitchen table!) that really helps us, parents, make the most out of our time preparing and enjoying a few minutes of delicious fun at the family dinner table! This is a fantastic idea and a great book to help start and maintain a wonderful tradition of sitting down together to share our day, our lives and some food amongst those we love! Great tips and creative tricks for engaging kids in the preparation (and enjoyment) process too! Thanks!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Inspiring and Fun Guide to Family Dinner, October 18, 2010
    Laurie David has accomplished something amazing: she's blended research, recipes, advice and an unrelentingly charming and enthusiastic point of view into one book that's brimming with usable tips, great food, and wonderful stories. Oh, and there's poetry and fun facts too - enough stuff to run the risk of getting a few spills on the pages by keeping it on hand, right near the dinner table. This is a book that families can dip into time and again, for conversation starters, quizzes and games, and mealtime ideas (especially Friday night, when everyone thinks they're too tired to cook). As much fun as this book is, it also serves as a clarion call to families everywhere - for sitting down at least once a week (if not more) together to share a meal and conversation is one of the most healthful things a family can do - even if you're serving take out.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Every Family with Young Kids Should Buy & Use This Book!, November 26, 2010
    As the author of two books on family traditions (latest is The Book of New Family Traditions) and a mother myself, I'm a huge believer in the absolute value of shared family dinners. I give lots of ideas for fun and memorable dinners together in both my books. But The Family Dinner takes this focus much deeper, adding recipes and cool activities. This book is absolutely loaded with really good, often clever, suggestions and ideas. I love and agree with Laurie David's 10 basic rules, and was delighted with her fresh ideas for things like decorating the table and getting kids to help in every stage. A whole other dimension is the emphasis on being environmentally responsible in relation to family meals.

    I cannot recommend this book highly enough!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Always at our kitchen table!, November 5, 2010
    I love cookbooks and I read them like novels. This one however is one step further with not only great recipes but wonderful tips on what to talk about at the dinner table, games and other neat stuff. Kirstin's recipes are easy and delicious, I have so far tried the kale with tahini, green pesto and the pea nutty noodles... best of all, my kids like all the dishes and are happy to help cooking it. And the photos! Very inspiring. Great job Kirstin and Laurie!

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Family Dinner, November 2, 2010
    Laurie and Kristin are really onto something here. A wise woman once told me that if we don't sit down and really listen to our kids one day they'll just stop talking. The Family Dinner offers sound advice on how to set aside time in our busy day to really sit and get the conversation going. Bring some of these games and conversation starters to your dinner table and I think you'll be amazed at how fun and effective they can be.

    5-0 out of 5 stars THE BIBLE FOR CREATING A SACRED RITUAL AND A HAPPY HOME, November 1, 2010
    There isn't a mother I know, who doesn't profit greatly from the ease and access afforded them by technology --but who doesn't fear its overall impact on her children --and herself-- in the future. It has completely destroyed any sense of non-working time and privacy. This book is a reminder that the entire universe exists within our homes when our families are with us. Nothing is more important than cultivating these connections, and this book gives you insightful, creative and effective ways to establish bonds that will endure for generations-all while learning how to cook delicious dinners that are healthy for your family and the planet, as well. The resource guide at the end of the book is worth the purchase alone!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Amazin Book, October 22, 2010
    "The Family Dinner" is a recipe for your family's happiness - this book
    has really kept my family around the dinner table! Great for beginners
    as well as experienced cooks - this book has lots of yummy and healthy
    recipes that are quick and really easy to make. And the photos are
    gorgeous -- I've never spent so many hours going through a cookbook!
    This is a must-have cookbook for every family. (And a great gift idea
    for the holidays!)
    ... Read more

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