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Expecting Adam: A true story of birth, transformation and unconditional love Paperback – 19 Apr 2001


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Expecting Adam: A true story of birth, transformation and unconditional love + Finding Your Own North Star: How to claim the life you were meant to live + Steering By Starlight: How to fulfil your destiny, no matter what
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Product details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Piatkus; New Ed edition (19 April 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0749921900
  • ISBN-13: 978-0749921903
  • Product Dimensions: 13.1 x 2.3 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (65 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 93,590 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Martha Beck is a bestselling author and life coach. She has made numerous appearances on television and radio, including the television show OPRAH, and has published academic books and articles on a variety of social science and business topics. She has carried out research at Harvard Business School, and through her company Life Design, Inc. she helps clients develop their careers and their lives.

Product Description

From the Publisher

I'm Martha Beck's editor; here's why I love her book so much
I wanted to tell you more about EXPECTING ADAM because it's the freshest, funniest, wisest book I've come across in years.

At its heart, this is a memoir about learning to live through the fear of change and trusting that the forces around you will watch over you. It's an account of the life-transforming things that happened to Martha when she discovered during her second pregnancy that the baby--whom she and her husband John later named Adam in utero--had Down Syndrome. The miraculous events that followed this crushing discovery forced Martha and John to trash their carefully planned lives in Harvard's ivory tower and make fearless, unconventional choices instead. As Martha told me, "That was when I lost my life, but fortunately, it was the wrong life."

I've gotten amazing quotes for this book from Anne Lamott, Marion Winik, and Jacquelyn Mitchard--none of whom knew me or Martha--among others. But just as important, I've gotten more raves for EXPECTING ADAM from my coworkers than for any other book I've edited since I started in the business in l98l; our marketing director told me that "reading this book made me a better person." I've gotten so many calls from our sales reps about it that I picture them basically trying to love this book onto the shelves. I've got to believe that all this is because EXPECTING ADAM is such a genuinely fulfilling reader's book. I've also come to admire and adore Martha--okay, flat-out love her--because she's so terrifically funny, warm, and inspiring. I really think she's helping me get a life too.

I hope you'll be as moved and surprised by EXPECTING ADAM as I've been. Let me know what you think of it.

Yours,

Elizabeth Rapoport, Executive Editor, Times Books --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Martha Beck is a bestselling author. She has made numerous appearances on television and radio, including the television show OPRAH. She has carried out research at Harvard Business School, and through her company Life Design, Inc. she helps clients develop their careers and their lives.

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Successful on 11 Feb. 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is my all-time favourite book! I have read and reread it and never become tired of it. I love everything about it; especially the fact that it forces one to look at what appears to be a disasterous situation - the birth of a baby with Down's Syndrome into a family of almost fanatical intellectuals - with a completely new perspective. It validates the cliche that "everything happens for the best"...even though it might take some of us a very long time to realise how we have benefited from some of the more traumatic experiences in our own lives. The miracle of this book is that the author has taken a subject which one imagines is going to spawn a very grim read and, instead, has managed to create an incredibly moving, warm and - yes! - very funny book. A great triumph!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 18 Aug. 1999
Format: Hardcover
Thank you, thank you, thank you Martha Beck for this marvelous tale of your journey. I have been spinning my wheels agonizing over admission to the graduate school of my dreams and postponing motherhood for the sake of academic pursuits. Martha's book spoke to me on so many levels, but the most inspirational message is that of finding one's calling. She reminded me that my worth can not be measured by a pedigree or climbing a corporate ladder. My value is intrinsic and I already possess the key to my serenity and peace. As a dear friend recently reminded me, "The things you're looking for are right under your nose. Don't miss out on your blessing because it isn't packaged the way you expect." Martha reminded me of this once again. Allow her story to speak to you!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 6 Sept. 1999
Format: Hardcover
I have a daughter with a very severe genetic syndrome which is why I bought this book. I have read several books in the disablitly genre and therefore believed this book would be very predictible. Boy was I wrong!
Little did I know that Martha Beck would speak directly to my heart and make me realize that life is too short to persue goals for the sake of achieving the goal. Rather, we must listen to our hearts and sometimes be willing to take risks. Thank you Martha Beck...with your guidance I was able to take action and free myself from a completely unrewarding career.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 25 May 1999
Format: Hardcover
I read like a fiend and must say this is one of the best books I've read in ages. This is not the the sad tale of a yuppie couple expecting a child with Down's. It is an honest, insightful and yes, even humorous, account of this strong and interesting woman's journey to the acceptance of her less-than-perfect baby. Anyone can appreciate Beck's dilemma as she decides not to terminate her pregnancy and faces the fallout from that decision. Beck takes us on a truly heartbreaking but wonderful journey as she faces the unknown. Written beautifully, told with painful honesty...I can't recommend this book highly enough. Be forewarned, however, Beck does dabble in the spiritual and mystical challenging the acceptance of even the most open-minded soul. I have recommended this book to all my friends and family. Those who have taken the plunge have loved it as well. If you don't read this book you are truly missing out on a tale which will warm your heart, make you laugh and cry out loud and cause you to examine your own beliefs and value system. Thank you, Martha Beck!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Dona Rendell on 8 Jan. 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is an account of the experiences of a highly-educated and academically-successful couple expecting a child, prenatally diagnosed, with Down's syndrome in the eighties. The story is moving and engaging and the book is well-written. It is firmly placed in the eighties and both the reaction of the parents and the narrative are influenced by the beliefs of the Mormon church to which both the author and her husband belonged until mid nineties.

It is emphasized in the epilogue of the book that the story is true and as factual as possible. I found this difficult to believe, not because of the miracles (which really are more being in touch with one's self rather than unexplainable events), but rather because of what happened next in Martha Beck's life and how it all unravelled.

Overall, this is a good book, and I recommend it. Approach with caution as it feels a bit self-centred and high-brow, and quite unflattering to the academic life, academic standards and academics in top universities in general.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 26 April 1999
Format: Hardcover
I love this book. I got it because I am considering a special needs adoption and I came across it by accident. Buying this book was not a mistake -- it's one of the most wonderful stories. Martha Beck renders such a magnificent portrayal of what mothers go through when something is wrong with their kid in an area that other kids are considered "normal." Also, it is a spiritual journey and one that will make you think again about how you view reality. I couldn't put this book down and had to keep reading. Not just to find out how the story unfolded, but to see what would unfold in myself as I read. I recommend this book to all mothers, all parents. It is also pure inspiration for anyone coping with any kind of personal limitations, no matter what they are.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By marjorie narey on 6 Mar. 2011
Format: Paperback
Expecting Adam is a heart warming experience for the reader. It shows how courage and conviction will almost always triumph over adversity. Martha Beck's love for Adam and her pride in him motivated her to immortalise him in a book and I'm so glad she did. I would love to know more, as to how she and her husband coped with the (then) new and unusual addition to the family. It would, I'm sure make for another heartwarming read. Thoroughly recommended.
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