Advice about pregnancy isn’t hard to find, but good advice about pregnancy may as well be made of gold. If you’ve already sifted through our 100-title long list of books on pregnancy, childbirth, and parenting, then you’re off to a great start. Follow it up with these new and upcoming pregnancy books about getting pregnant, overcoming infertility, and staying healthy for those nine long months.
This genre let us down a little: as some of our authors point out, there’s not a whole lot of recent material to go on for parents of color, minority religious status, or LGBTQ identification. However, thanks to the amazing Book Riot team, we found a few that address the specific issues associated with being brown or queer and pregnant in the U.S.
1. A Is for Advice (The Reassuring Kind): Wisdom for Pregnancy by Ilana Stanger-Ross
Written by a midwife, this playful meditation on pregnancy is short, pretty, and fun. Over the 26 letters of the alphabet, Stanger-Ross soothes fears and tells stories, all with a strong feminist perspective.
2. Beyond the Baby Blues: Anxiety and Depression During and After Pregnancy by Rebecca Fox Starr and Amy Wenzel
During her pregnancy, Starr experienced very little emotional glow or expectant joy. Instead, she was sad—very sad. This personal look at pregnancy and post-partum depression is as validating as it is brave.
3. Birth Without Fear: The Judgment-Free Guide to Taking Charge of Your Pregnancy, Birth, and Postpartum by January Harshe
If you’re familiar with the Birth Without Fear online community, then you may already know about Harshe’s work on pregnancy. Instead of stating what’s “normal,” this book gives you a normative range of variations.
4. Conceivability: What I Learned Exploring the Frontiers of Fertility by Elizabeth Katkin
After seven miscarriages and ten IVF attempts, lawyer Katkin embarked on her own research. It would take her around the world and into the furthest corners of fertility research.
Queer, unmarried, and 37, Brockes realized one day that she couldn’t wait for the stars to align if she wanted to be a mother. Her ensuing journey took her on a whirlwind tour of fertility treatments, cultural expectations, and Libertarian OB/GYNs.
6. Expecting Mindfully: Nourish Your Emotional Well-Being and Prevent Depression during Pregnancy and Postpartum by Sona Dimidjian, Sherryl H. Goodman, Sharon Salzberg
If you’re into guided meditation, yoga, and anti-anxiety exercises, then this book might be for you. The idea is to fend off pregnancy and post-partum depression using wellness and mindfulness techniques.
7. The Fifth Vital Sign: Master Your Cycles & Optimize Your Fertility by Lisa Hendrickson-Jack
This author makes no bones about it: she likes to talk about vaginas! This book synthesizes her expert guidance into a single, amazingly useful volume.
8. Finding Inner Peas: My Sometimes-hilarious Story of Infertility, High-risk Pregnancy, and Finding Out That I Control Absolutely Nothing by Erin Salem
It’s not every day that you find out not only that your cervix looks like a smiley face, but that you might have trouble getting pregnant. Follow Salem and nearly 20% of women who attempt pregnancy on her rollicking fertility adventure.
9. Give Birth Like a Feminist by Milli Hill
Pregnancy and childbirth can focus a lot on the baby and not much on the mother. This book prioritizes the person carrying the child and returns some of that power to them.
10. The Guud Book: About Infertility by Dr. Camille Hammond, illustrated by Ana Patankar
There’s no good script for conversations about infertility. The Guud Book explodes this uncomfortable topic with clear, detailed facts and an honest depiction of the emotional toll of difficult conception.
11. Kid Gloves: Nine Months of Careful Chaos by Lucy Knisley
The author of Relish and Something New now tackles the birth of her child. In winning comic book format, Knisley describes her fertility problems, difficult pregnancy, and the lessons she learned along the way.
Unlike conflicting blogs and less-than-wise common wisdom, Like A Mother uses real research to examine the physiology and sociology of being a pregnant woman. Garbes also recently signed a book deal for an upcoming work titled Everybody, Every Body.
13. Motherhood So White: A Memoir of Race, Gender, and Parenting in America by Nefertiti Austin
When Austin tried to adopt a Black child, she was shocked at the prejudice and racism that she encountered. Her experience led her to understand that in mainstream American culture, “mother” actually means “white mother.” This book is both the synthesis of her experience and an examination of African-American adoption.
14. Sidekick: A Pregnancy Field Guide for Dudes by Brig Berthold
It’s direct, it’s to-the-point, and it tells the eponymous dude (or, conceivably, any non-gestational partner) how to support and abet a pregnant person. A valuable guide for first-timers!
15. We’re Pregnant! The First Time Dad’s Pregnancy Handbook by Adrian Kulp
In case you’re more of a visual learner, this book utilizes a comic-style format to show expectant dads how to properly support someone who’s pregnant. Advice ranges from meal prep to finishing the nursery.
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