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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best baby book-bin all the others-this one is amazing!
This has to be the best baby book I've read, I just wish I bought it earlier whilst pregnant and binned all the other patronising, dull and text-booky type ones (written mostly by unbearably bossy midwives). If you only choose one book to have I would totally recommend this one-it's honest, funny, down to earth, concise and written by someone who has recent personal...
Published on 23 Sep 2011 by manhattan78

versus
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Amusing, but jaw droppingly patronising
This book is well written in that is articulate, readable, and amusing. If written and marketed as one mother's tales of motherhood, it would make an entertaining christmas present. But to market it as a guide to caring for a baby is arrogant in the extreme - I can find no evidence of any qualification and the author appears to be a pleasant mum of three children, with...
Published 7 months ago by Ms. Laura C. A. Nesfield


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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best baby book-bin all the others-this one is amazing!, 23 Sep 2011
This review is from: First-Time Parent: The honest guide to coping brilliantly and staying sane in your baby's first year (Paperback)
This has to be the best baby book I've read, I just wish I bought it earlier whilst pregnant and binned all the other patronising, dull and text-booky type ones (written mostly by unbearably bossy midwives). If you only choose one book to have I would totally recommend this one-it's honest, funny, down to earth, concise and written by someone who has recent personal experience of raising 3 young ones. It's written and formatted to easily dip in and out of (which new parent has the time or energy to wade through huge hard backs?), has all the important up to date guide lines and government info and even covers topics that other books I've read don't cover such as traumatic births and suggested web sites etc.
Even though it's not as comprehensive as other guides ( like the 'What to expect?' range or Dr. Mirium Stoppard for example)it really does cover everything you could possibly need to know and more. My baby is now 5 months old and in the few weeks I've owned the book I've used it so many times and it has given me not only more confidence and insight than all the other books put together but it has genuinely made me laugh too- something I haven't done properly due to sleep deprivation for quite some time!It really does keep it's promise to help you cope, stay sane and feel normal. Personally, what I have really valued is the authors way of helping you feel like she is on your side and not to feel so pressured by everything (it's your baby, trust your instincts!) especially as a first time parent so many things can make you feel lost or overwhelmed.I have found that so many other books make you feel guilty or incompetent and tell you what you 'should' be doing. Cannot recommend highly enough and look forward to more guides by same author.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars first time parent, 4 Oct 2010
This review is from: First-Time Parent: The honest guide to coping brilliantly and staying sane in your baby's first year (Paperback)
Easy to read, and full of useful information.
Because some of us do need a step by step photo guide to putting on a nappy.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book hardly needs another five star review, but still..., 1 Aug 2013
By 
someenglishrose (London, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: First-Time Parent: The honest guide to coping brilliantly and staying sane in your baby's first year (Paperback)
I'm still pregnant, so I can't say how good the advice in this book will be when actually put into practice but even if it turns out to be nonsense, I still count this as 8 well spent because after reading it I feel so much better about the prospect of looking after my baby! For a start, it's immensely practical with step-by-step photo guides to all those things you just don't know how to do until you've been let loose on a real baby (nappies, swaddling, bathing, burping, getting the baby to latch on...). The author is also very honest. For example, she relates the official advice that you should never heat up a bottle in the microwave before going on to admit that she doesn't know an experienced mother who doesn't use the microwave and providing instructions on how to do it. Her advice on the potentially fraught areas of sleeping and eating is very commonsense and reassuring. The first couple of pages, which tell you what you actually need to buy, are a godsend!

I had got my husband to read a book on how your relationship changes after baby, which we both agreed was a bit of a waste of time. However, I'm glad he's read this one as I think the author's (brutally) honest description of the challenges of doing simple activities after childbirth/while trying to look after a baby have convinced him of the necessity of stepping up to the plate around the house and with baby care more than any amount of hand-wringing self-help books.

Some people are complaining that they would like more detail. I can see why they might say that but this isn't really meant to be a childcare encyclopaedia. By all means buy a big fat book to use as a reference when you need it (I have: "Your Babycare Bible", which is fine), but actually read this one!
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54 of 61 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it. Would give it 10 stars if I could!, 25 Nov 2009
By 
A. Lee - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: First-Time Parent: The honest guide to coping brilliantly and staying sane in your baby's first year (Paperback)
We were swamped by books on how to bring up our child when expecting a baby; this was the only one that actually sounded like the writer was a mother herself, AND realised that not everyone in the world thought as she did on parenting, or had a child exactly like her own.

Lucy Atkin rounds up all the most common strategies advised where parenting is concerned and offers them with neutrality. She has an honest but non-directional attitude to the great breast v bottle dilemma, she talks with sympathy about women who need to choose childcare early and offers tips on how to spot a good option, and she has some of the most sensible words on diet for toddlers I've ever read. She also recognises that children are simply hard work, as well as exciting, challenging and fantastic. It's such a change to read something that isn't a series of orders, sickly and unrealistic, or depressing. She really conveys what having a first child is like, in all its messy, confusing, glorious excitement, while offering the most down to earth and sensible advice possible. There isn't, anywhere, that depressingly common conviction that anyone whose parenting style is different to the writer's will scar their child for life.

Last but not least, she has listed all the very best resources for new parents - from Mumsnet to Crysis, via the wonderful breast feeding clinic at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good book, 19 Oct 2013
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This review is from: First-Time Parent: The honest guide to coping brilliantly and staying sane in your baby's first year (Paperback)
I would really recommend mums to be to buy this book. Not too much or little info it's written in plain English and straight to the point. I have recommended this to my friends.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars GOD SEND!, 28 May 2013
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This review is from: First-Time Parent: The honest guide to coping brilliantly and staying sane in your baby's first year (Paperback)
amazing i bought this when i was 25 weeks pregnant as they say nothing will prepare you... but this at least helped with what the rough guideline are to parent hood. helped alot and gave a sense of confidence.. would recommend to ALL parents not just new!
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Solid advice and essential information without the preaching, 15 Nov 2010
This review is from: First-Time Parent: The honest guide to coping brilliantly and staying sane in your baby's first year (Paperback)
Motherhood comes with a lot of propaganda these days, from the cast-iron sleep routines of Gina Ford to the brick-like tome of authority that is What To Expect When You're Expecting. There are a lot of experts out there ready to tell you everything they know about your baby.

But there is no law - yet, anyway - that says you have to listen to them. I didn't want to be drowned in schedules, rules or timetables. It's not a boot camp, I told myself (then had a slightly worrying vision of the feral children that awaited me).

Then I was lucky enough to come across First-Time Parent. `You may be bonkers, but you're not stupid,' says author and mother-of-three Lucy Atkins, `and in your baby's eyes you're the only expert that matters.' She goes on to cover everything you actually need to know, from what to pack in a nappy bag to how to swaddle a newborn, sprinkled with words of reassurance to the clueless - `your baby doesn't know any better than you do how he should be bathed or fed. The right way, in short, is your fumbling, inept, loving and slowly evolving way.'

I liked the sections on breastfeeding, how to establish a sleep routine from early on, and sixteen things to try if a baby won't stop crying. She also offers sound advice on things like long-haul flights and trips to the supermarket: `shop online. You know it makes sense.' And there's a brilliant chapter on how to keep your relationship with your partner on track: `one word: babysitters'.

In short, if you're after solid advice without the preaching, this is an excellent resource, complete with gorgeous photos of newborns. Like a lot of things, parenting is something you learn by doing, but practical, essential information, conveyed in an adult-to-adult tone, is invaluable.
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23 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it - buying it for friends, 12 Jan 2010
This review is from: First-Time Parent: The honest guide to coping brilliantly and staying sane in your baby's first year (Paperback)
My husband and I had no previous experience of babies whatsoever and had what I'm sure are the usual million questions. It would be unreasonable to expect all those answers in any one book, but Lucy Atkins gives lots of useful information and tips in a down-to-earth, not at all patronising way (unlike some other authors I've read). My favourite chapters are on Crying and Sleeping where she gives handy tips to try out and generally makes you feel.. well, a bit supported really.
Also, I read her book, 'Blooming Birth' when I was pregnant and would absolutely recommend it to anyone having their first child.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Amusing, but jaw droppingly patronising, 12 Dec 2013
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This review is from: First-Time Parent: The honest guide to coping brilliantly and staying sane in your baby's first year (Paperback)
This book is well written in that is articulate, readable, and amusing. If written and marketed as one mother's tales of motherhood, it would make an entertaining christmas present. But to market it as a guide to caring for a baby is arrogant in the extreme - I can find no evidence of any qualification and the author appears to be a pleasant mum of three children, with no more experience or authority than any other, as she suggests in phrases like 'it took me ages to realise this' and 'it never worked for me' The 'advice' ranges from unhelpful - apparantly the way to go to a supermarket is to either breastfeed in it eating 20 twixes or let the baby howl and the get back in the car to sob behind the wheel (unhelpful for a mother feeling in need of guidance), incredibly patronising (don't give baby boiling hot food as it will burn mouths, take nappieson long haul flights etc etc) and not necessarily accurate for a book so bossy and full of "follow my guide statements". I disagree that a father who is working (ie keeping the roof over the family's head) should be up at night lots, which the author states is "absolute rubbish", don't think staying in yuor pyjamas for three days will make you feel good necessarily. The book is a wittily written reminiscence of her own experience of chaos and stress, and although a reader who has managed to have a baby without any contact from midwives, friends, own mother, doctor and internet might find it reassuring to hear the authors rather bossy one sided view on the blindingly obvious, I feel sure most parents know not to give coffee to their baby, to try a rattle for entertainment etc etc.
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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent guide for newbie parents, 3 Sep 2010
This review is from: First-Time Parent: The honest guide to coping brilliantly and staying sane in your baby's first year (Paperback)
Both prior to, and after the birth this book has been of great value to my partner and I. Believe me when I say I knew absolutely nothing about babies when my partner fell pregnant. I devoured this book like a man possessed, driven by my terror at being left in charge of a little persons welfare. The author covers everything you could need and does so without being at all patronising. So now when I'm awake with my daughter at 2am, ear pressed to her chest frantically checking that she's still breathing or panicking that her mild gurgle may lead to all out choking, I have a reference point. It's comforting to know that any concerns I have, be it feeding, sleeping or the inevitable changes to my relationship with my partner, are all explained. Though you'll do well to remember this book is a guide not a miracle worker as all babies are different.
The writing is considered and with real warmth. This book cost me less than a tenner, whilst antenatal classes cost us over 150. I know which one we'll get more use out of as our scary but amazing parental journey continues.
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