Review From User :

I think this is the best pregnancy book I have found. I started to read What to Expect..., but found it kind of patronizing and alarmist. It seemed to feed into the whole treating-all-pregnancies-as-though-they-are-high-risk-pregnancies attitude that I find so problematic. I gave up on that book because I felt it would encourage me to act like the paranoid, senseless women that congregate online on

I like this book because it covers everything that a woman with a normal healthy pregnancy needs to know. It's not alarmist or condescending. At times, it's cloyingly positive about pregnancy, and that drove me a bit nuts. But if a book's going to be too extreme, I would rather it's extreme in the "pregnancy is important and powerful and magical" direction, than the "pregnancy is an life-threatening, horrible illness that must be managed by doctors in their infinite wisdom" direction.

I completely disagree with the reviewers that think the book is biased in favor of medical intervention and obstetric care. I think the Searses did a very good job of trying to remain neutral on the obstetric v. midwife care issue. They present it in a way that allows women to make their own decisions. They emphasize that each approach is guided by a different set of assumptions. They try to paint a positive picture of both.

In their section on tests that can be run during pregnancy, they explicitly say that no interventions is the best route to go. They dissuade people from getting ultrasounds unless there is a medical need for them (i.e., not just to find out the sex). So, I hardly read the Searses as uncritical advocates of obstetric care as it is practiced in the US.

The parts where they detail what's going to happen each month are thoroughly disgusting. Any woman who isn't already pregnant should read them and think really seriously about whether they really want to go through all that nonsense. But, for ladies that are already with child, those sections are helpful and reassuring.

Media Size : 2.7 MB