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Secrets of the Baby Whisperer Hardcover – Feb 2001

4.0 out of 5 stars 454 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 287 pages
  • Publisher: Ballintine Publishing Group (Feb. 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000CS2T1S
  • Product Dimensions: 23.8 x 15.8 x 2.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (454 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 407,161 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
At present, I have a love/hate relationship with this book. I made the mistake of reading it while pregnant and thought "Being a mum is going to be simple, what on earth do people complain about?" However I realised from day four (the day on which Hogg recommends starting your baby on E.A.S.Y.) that if motherhood were as easy as this book makes out, I would be significantly less tired and harassed than i am now!
So Hogg recommends starting your baby on a routine from day four... well as far as Eating was concerned, my newborn just couldn't rest unless she was at the breast and actually this is not surprising given the trauma she had been through plus the fact she was probably starving and my milk supply needed a good week to rev up. i personally think putting a newborn on a feeding routine at such a tender age is ludicrous. Now my baby is nearly four weeks old and we are on the 2.5 - 3 hour feeding routine and i couldn't recommend it strongly enough but it is unrealistic and demoralising to a first-time mum to find her baby does not wish to dance to Tracey Hogg's tune from day one (or rather, day four). As for the Activity bit, it is recommended that from birth to three months your baby is given 45 minutes entertainment time. i quickly realised that a newborn does not have the capacity for 45 minutes entertainment, and even now my daughter cannot entertain herself that easily, and i can only do so much to keep her so. What the book fails to mention is that your young baby might wish to spend her time crying as a past time! As for the Sleep part, Hogg blithely talks about putting your baby down for the night and seems to imply that a little reassuring pat and a rub was is all it takes to quieten your infant.
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Format: Paperback
There's some really good stuff in this book.

Hogg recommends taking time to learn your baby's body language and understand what they want (I couldn't understand why anyone might need to be told to do this until I attended a post natal group and saw mothers plugging their baby's mouth with a tit every time they made a noise).

EASY is a good way of structuring your day when you're a first time mother without much of a clue. But, but, but - I have never cracked naps despite religiously following Tracy's advice and a blissful 3 weeks of baby sleeping through the night turned out to be the ONLY time she did this. Baby has developed a dependence on dummies through following Tracy's technique for getting her to sleep even though I have been very careful NOT to over-use them.

I didn't find the baby classification too helpful - seems to be a bit early to be labelling the poor little mites.

I've read a lot of baby books, from Gina Ford to Sears, which pretty much encompasses both extremes. Tracy's not as rigid as Gina and a lot more humane but there is still a emphasis on getting baby to fit with your life and if you don't manage to train them into whatever the recommended structure is, then you're culpable. What I like about Sears is that he acknowledges that babies turn your life upside down, you can't train them like a labrador, sometimes the techniques don't work and it's NOT YOUR FAULT. Sometimes you have to do what it takes (bring baby into bed, demand feed etc) and remember that it's not going to be forever and it's OK!
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Format: Paperback
This is written with both love and common-sense by a former paediatric nurse and mother of two. It is packed with tips and advice on all aspects of caring for a baby, including excellent stuff on how to "read" your baby's signals. Like most first time mums I associated crying with hunger every time until I read this book - now I am much more adept at reading body language and identifying when my daughter is tired/bored/hungry. Rather than put your baby in a regimented routine a la Gina Ford, Tracy Hogg suggests a flexible "eat-activity-sleep" pattern (the "EASY routine") which can vary in length and the cycles don't have to start or end at any particular time. It certainly works for me and my daughter, who is a very chilled-out baby indeed! The text is written in a non-patronising, and non-judgemental manner by someone who has had their own children and cared for many others. The only minor criticism I have is that some of the language is a little "Americanised" as Tracy worked in America for several years. However, don't let that put you off, this is an invaluable guide for first time mums so buy this and consign Gina and her draconian routine to the dustbin once and for all!!
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Format: Paperback
This book is roughly 20% useful, 20% rubbish, and 60% fluff. The advice here is useful, occasionally a little too prescriptive (although compared to many books, this is quite relaxed), but padded out with far too much waffle.
It can be summed up as follows: give your baby some activity after a feed, and they'll sleep longer.
But that, of course, isn't enough reason to buy a book, and so Hogg (or her cowriter) cleverly structures it into the 'E.A.S.Y.' system, with a chapter each devoted to eating, activity, sleeping and 'your time'. There are also Cosmo-style quizzes such as 'what type of baby do you have' (tip: skip to the descriptions and decide yourself), and other catchy acronyms.
This is all interspersed with brand-building stuff about her Yorkshire background and her Nan's wisdom, which I'm sure the Americans love but which grates very quickly.
But a quick scan-read will give you a number of helpful tips such as burping the baby *before* you feed as well as after; placing the new nappy underneath the old one when you're about to change it; and not trying too hard to stimulate your new baby with fancy toys (which actually overstimulate them and make them cry) when actually they're quite happy to stare at a piece of cardboard for half an hour, or, in my case it seems, gawp at my face while trying to keep their head from bumping into my chin.
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