Book for a soon-to-be new mom?
December 10, 2013 2:56 PM   Subscribe

My cousin's fiance will be having a baby this next spring. She loves to read and is really a fun, smart person. I'd like to get her a book as a pregnancy gift. I'd really prefer for it to be about a new mom. Suggestions?

I like books with strong women characters and I don't want the book to be preachy - more adventures of a new mom type stuff. I found those first few weeks at home with the baby to be exhausting and I'd like to give her a little pick-me-up type of book that she can relate to.

If there are fiction or nonfiction books that fit this bill, either will work! Just no agenda pushing or self-help books, please.
posted by jillithd to Media & Arts (11 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
Operating Instructions by Anne Lamott. Pee your pants funny.
posted by BoscosMom at 2:59 PM on December 10, 2013 [7 favorites]

Bad Mother
posted by janey47 at 3:00 PM on December 10, 2013

A used copy of Norma Klein's Give Me One Good Reason (out of print).
posted by brujita at 3:24 PM on December 10, 2013

Best answer: These were two of my very favorite books right after my daughter was born. Great with Child - letters to a young mother, from a poet (but it's not poetry, just gorgeously written).

The Birth of a Mother.

Apparently I really liked commentary on the mothering aspect of this phase of life rather than the baby stuff! (I hated Operating Instructions, and I like Lamott's other work. For what that's worth.)
posted by peanut_mcgillicuty at 3:43 PM on December 10, 2013

Yes to Operating Instructions. A friend gave it to me just after I had my first one, explaining that it was something I could read in snatches while we nursed or in moments the baby was napping. It is so funny, but also so poignant and truthful about just how hard those first weeks/months are. It was nice to know that I wasn't alone in feeling that way.
posted by goggie at 3:57 PM on December 10, 2013 [2 favorites]

One more for Operating Instructions.

My favorite while I was pregnant was Room Lit By Roses by Carole Maso. It's more about the pregnancy than birth, but it's beautiful and really resonated with me.

Another favorite for the first year of infancy - Momma Zen. Karen Maezen Miller is a zen priest whose struggles with new motherhood are just like everyone else's. The book is absolutely non dogmatic and I would whole heatedly recommend it to any mother, regardless of religious affiliation.
posted by sonika at 4:59 PM on December 10, 2013

There is a sequel to Operating Instructions, if she likes it.

I liked Growing Eden... it's just a short 90 pg ebook by a young mother about becoming a young mother (well, she's 26), a bit rambly, but quite funny.
posted by jrobin276 at 6:28 PM on December 10, 2013

Guarding the Moon, by Francesca Lia Block. It's not funny like Operating Instructions, but it is lovely and thoughtful and honest.
posted by corey flood at 10:14 PM on December 10, 2013

I read Operating Instructions the week after my daughter was born. Hilarious? No, I didn't particularly think so, save for a few passages. But it is extremely honest and I'd still recommend it.

I really enjoyed Little Earthquakes by Jennifer Weiner and am planning to dig it out of storage soon to reread.
posted by anderjen at 7:38 AM on December 11, 2013

Best answer: Waiting for Birdy, by Catherine Newman, and an enthusiastic +1 for Operating Instructions.
posted by Empidonax at 6:06 AM on December 13, 2013

Response by poster: Thanks, all. I got her a copy of "Great With Child" and "Waiting for Birdy". Hopefully she likes them!
posted by jillithd at 8:29 AM on December 16, 2013

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