03 March 2011

Review and giveaway: Let's Panic About Babies!

Amazon: Let's Panic About Babies!Parent Hacks is all about poking friendly holes in the "expert parenting" racket. In their new book, Let's Panic About Babies!, Alice Bradley and Eden Kennedy point a flamethrower -- an exceedingly smart and funny flamethrower -- in the same direction.

Let's Panic is for anyone who appreciates the humor inherent in the messy parts of pregnancy and parenting. If you're a reader of Finslippy and Fussy, you know each author has her own distinctive voice and sense of fun. In Let's Panic, they've managed to combine their voices to hilarious effect. This is Laurel and Hardy-level teamwork, which is difficult enough in any writing project. But a humor book? Wow. These ladies are tal-en-ted.

But who cares about the writing! IS IT REALLY THAT FUNNY? This book is crazy funny for moms and dads who like their humor to bite back. In less skillful hands, a tongue-in-cheek screed such as this could fall flat, but this book keeps you laughing even as you're covering your mouth in disbelief that they actually just said that.

It's What To Expect meets The Onion...in a back alley. It's a bracing spoof (and reminder not to take this all so seriously) in a world of milquetoast parenting books that make us feel bad about ourselves while boring us to death.

At Amazon: Let's Panic About Babies!: How to Endure and Possibly Triumph Over the Adorable Tyrant who Will Ruin Your Body, Destroy Your Life, Liquefy Your Brain and Finally Turn You into a Worthwhile Human Being, by Alice Bradley and Eden Kennedy, $7.72

On the Web: Let's Panic About Babies! website

On Twitter: @letspanic_

On YouTube:

Win it! Three lucky Parenthackers will walk away with their very own copies of Let's Panic About Babies, and one extra-lucky Parenthacker (who's more deserving than the others) will win a "Panic Break" gift basket containing the following nifties:

To enter, leave a comment answering the following question:

Which parenting book has made the biggest impression on you, either good or bad?

The comments are now closed and the winners have been chosen!

Note: Giveaway open to residents of the US and Canada only. One entry per person.

Your comments

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I too love Vicki Iovine's "Girlfriends Guides"! I've had four children and I pull the Pregnancy book out and read it pretty soon after I start puking at about four weeks and keep it near the bed while I continue puking for another 9 (10) months! If I am blessed with another pregnancy, I will surely read it again!

I liked The Parenting Survival Kit quite a bit. These are not really parenting books per se but I absolutely adored Belly Laughs and Baby Laughs by Jenny McCarthy. They were both hilarious!

My best friend is a cog sci professor so when she sent me "The Magic Years" by Selma Fraiberg with a note saying it's one of the best child development books out there, I was verrrrrrry interested. It's a great book. It's not about parenting per se, but it IS about how kids think, what they think, and why they think it, and that has helped shape my parenting of our toddler in a much more productive and understanding way.

I have really enjoyed "Parking Lot Rules and 75 other ideas for raising amazing children" it was nice to read- gave my husband and I lots to discuss.

One that was recommended to me for sleep training by an acquaintance was The Baby Whisperer by Tracy Hogg. As a first time parent who knew nothing about babies, I tried to follow her methods of sleep training and putting baby on a schedule of eat/activity/sleep with my first one but I found that caused me a lot of stress. This book worked for some people, and sort of worked for me but when I had my 2nd baby, I felt more relaxed in just doing what I felt and only occasionally turning to the book for some insight. I've read other parenting books too, but basically learned that you just have to do what works for you, taking different ideas from different people and combining it into a mish-mash of what is me.

My new favourite is NutureShock, which is really interesting and thought provoking.

My favorite is Love and Logic. I also like The Happiest Baby on The Block. I've heard Have a New Kid by Friday by Dr. Kevin Leman is really good, but I haven't had a chance to read it yet.

Nurture Shock. Actual science and studies and stuff!

Of course, it's also the only one I've read. I've got four more months before I'm a mom--I guess I should get cracking. Good thing I read fast!

You are awesome.

Okay, so I've submitted exactly one tip to ParentHacks with a bonus tip for those who were in a position to take advantage of it. I was stricken for the bonus.

I suggested that water and an old toothbrush would remove nearly anything from your clothing. It really couldn't have been more simple and pro-environment.

As a bonus, I told people about a secret that all upscale retailers know, that dry-cleaning fluid will remove any stain.

ANY stain.

No, I was not recommending that you rub dry-cleaning fluid on your baby.

DO NOT rub dry cleaning fluid on your baby.

And so, I appreciate your "Let's Panic About Babies" book, and will buy it immediately.

The Fussy Baby by Dr. Sears. My first baby had horrible colic for his first 6 months. I was miserable and really thought that no baby in the world could possibly be as tough as he was. I thought for sure SOMETHING had to be wrong. Thanks to this book, I realized that he would grow up some day, likely into a tough toddler, but still...

I love the book Touchpoints. Had so many interesting tips and advice in it. And My fav funny one was Sippy Cups are for Chardonnay.

"Sippy Cups are not for Chardonney" by Stefanie Wilder-Taylor broke me out of my trance of newborn baby book gurus and helped me realize that my desparation and feelings of mom-gone-mad were normal. My favorite line: "She (the baby) knows I'm her bitch" :-)

The Baby Owner's Manual. Made me laugh out loud at a time when I really needed a laugh.

Free Range Kids for sure, and sounds like it might be a nice complement to this book (which I'd love to win)!

Bringing up boys by Dr. James Dobson! I've read it twice! It's helped so much in a positive way with my son.

We are humungous fans of Dr. Brazelton and his "Touchpoints" series. The Birth-age 3 did an amazing job explaining why our daughter seemed to go crazy each time she hit a major milestone, and helped us stay calm and on top of things. I was raised by Brazelton, and it seems my kids are too.

Anne Lamott's "Operating Instructions: A Journal Of My Son’s First Year" was my favorite by far - funny, moving, truthful and beautifully written.

Oh, this is a GREAT giveaway. I'm a longtime fan of fussy and finslippy, can't wait to get my hands on this book, winner or no. I'd also LOVE to share this with a few of my currently pregnant friends. Your "Panic Break" gift set sounds like the perfect shower gift.

Ok, my fave parenting book was the Ferber book. I know this one is either a love it or hate it, but I'm firmly in the love it camp. The wonder of having a rested kid and a rested parent really cannot be over stated. Also, I felt like, despite all the haters, Dr. Ferber is really quite sensible and sympathetic.

Thanks for the chance and fingers crossed!

My favorites were: 1. I'm Too Sexy for My Volvo by Betty Londergan--When I was deep in new mother panic, this one really kept it all in perspective and kept me and my husband laughing. 2. Solve Your Child's Sleep Problems by Richard Ferber--seriously saved our lives and our sanity. 3. The Expectant Father and The New Father by Armin Brott--Meant for the dads, but were so useful to me. Very matter-of-fact, didn't assume that the dad was the idiot parent and gave really, really good info on so many levels often much better than the books meant for moms.

Oh, one more...The Blessing of a Skinned Knee by Wendy Mogel. Love this book!

I read the "What to expect . ." for both Pregnancy and 1st Year and BabyWise. I took everything tongue and cheek. The best book for my husband and I was "The Pregnancy Journal - A day to day guide" as my husband was deployed and I was able to email him what was happening to our baby everyday. It kept him really connected during our first pregnancy. I didn't have much time to read anything else as I was also working during my first and second and just had no time during my third and fourth pregnancy.

The What to Expect... books.

It's hard to beat the classics. They're objective and straightforward, with timeless information that beats the trendy, conflicting parenting movements of pretty much everything else out there.

What to Expect made the biggest NEGATIVE impression on me. Way to cause me to panic at every little tiny twinge!

Close second: Anything Dr. Google turned up when I Googled "Is it normal to..."

This looks like a great book.

I really like "The Blessing of a Skinned Knee: Using Jewish Teachings to Raise Self-Reliant Children" Even though we're not Jewish, I've found it to be a really great book.

I always recommend "Happiest Baby on the Block" and "American Academy of Pediatrics: Birth to Age 5" to my patients who are expecting.

I think the only parenting book I read was "What to Expect".

I really enjoyed The Girlfriend's Guide to Pregnancy. It was so funny and so TRUE. I also read Babywise, but I didn't like it either. It seemed too rigid, and my baby is sleeping through the night. Maybe it is just him--not some book.

I think the only baby book I had was the Sears Baby Book which I found to be a great reference. However, I think the book that made the biggest impression was an old, out of print book that my friend had on breastfeeding. It had a bunch of instructions and pictures of women of ALL SHAPES breastfeeding...and somehow seeing women who looked like me really help me breastfeed my second better than my first.

Loved "What's going on in there" and the latest book I read, "Playful Parenting". Agree with several of the above opinions on "Baby Wise" - scary.

I very much enjoyed the book Becoming the Parent you Want to Be... very gentle suggestions and thoughts, without being dictatorial. I hate, hate, HATED the Dr. Sears book... even though I was already doing a fair bit of the attachment parenting stuff, he still made me feel guilty and like I was screwing up my child for life by not co-sleeping, etc.

I've read What to expect series and found it useful.

Not a parenting book but I loved Ina May's Guide to Childbirth. As a first time mom it made me believe that I could do this. As any woman is capable.

P.S. Great Blog.

The Jenny McCarthy book might not have been the most inspiriing! But it sure lightened things up for me when I needed it. :)

I'm enjoying "what to expect the first year", though it does on occasion have me in a panic,

Not so much baby books, but we love the Love & Logic books.

Mixed Blessings of A Skinned Knee

I'm not a huge fan of parenting books. There are 2 that I did get some things out of ~ I loved what to expect when you are expecting & then 123 Magic had some ok tips in it.

Haven't read any parenting books - yet. But that stage of life is around the corner, so I've enjoyed reading these suggestions. Let's Panic sounds right up my alley, because I'm determined to behave like a rational human being when I'm parent. I do enjoy the Free Range Kids blog, though!

Does the library of useless information and wives-tales in my Great Aunt's head count as a book? When I was pregnant she told me I got heartburn because the baby had hair(duh, we're mammals) and not the Jalapenos I was eating. I love her, she cracks me up!

I threw the Dr. Sears Baby Book in a recycling bin because it seemed mean to give it to anyone else.

The classic Dr. Spock made an impression on me. I knocked it off a shelf and fractured a toe. That's as close as I've gotten to a parenting book...

I read A LOT of parenting books when I was pregnant and when my oldest (now 7) was new. And "What to Expect" (up through "toddler years") had some great advice, but also some major chances to freak out because my kid wasn't meeting their guidelines or I wasn't the perfect person I was apparently supposed to be. But "Healthy Sleep Habits Happy Child" honestly made the most enormous difference. I was all freaked out, and this book just talked to me like a person and made me feel like our sleep troubles were totally normal. Some good advice, but mostly just reassurance that I wasn't crazy!

A family member gave me Babywise, and I was not impressed. After having it recommended to me by several people, I couldn't believe that people could demand their newborns to follow a schedule like that. Ridiculous.

I enjoyed Your Baby & Child much more. Penelope Leach provided insight to what my newborn son was probably thinking and going through and it helped me be more understanding when he would need to be held and bounced endlessly. All night.

I think I'll love Let's Panic About Babies! Irreverence is totally my style.

I didn't really read any parenting books other than Happiest Baby on the Block. I had such a happy baby that I didn't really need it... until he was about 6 months old. Someone gave me a copy of What to Expect... I didn't read it as it seemed like a book to instill fear.

The Three-Martini Playdate - loved it, LOVED it!

happiest baby on the block was my favorite. Ironically, I really DIDN'T enjoy happiest toddler on the block!

Bwahahaha! "The Fussy Baby Book" by Dr. Sears completely changed the way I related to and understood my daughter.

I love Three-Martini Playdate, with chapters such as "Child Labor: Not Just for the Third World". Hilarious and sarcastic, but with excellent grains of truth.

I didn't end up reading any parenting books. My background is in child development so I focused on what I learned from that as well as instinct.

I have read many parenting books since I am a teacher and an Early Childhood Educator. Many have influenced me in different ways but I have to say that the most influential book was "Raise your kids without Raising your voice". I grew up in a house where there was always yelling going on and I didn't want that for my children. This book and has helped me and my children connect better and helps me understand where my kids are coming from so I don't have the urge to yell.

The Baby Book by Dr. Sears has ruined my life. I thought it was amazing until my son was born! Now I'm being crushed with needless guilt because I'm working full time, I need to supplement with formula, and I desperately need him to sleep on something other than my chest. Ugh.

So yeah, I could use some humor.

So far, the only parenting book I've read is "taking charge of your fertility", because we're TTC, but I highly recommend it! I need to get started reading some of the books people listed! This book sounds great! The writing style sounds like it'll be a fun read!

Ferber's sleep book. Not for how to get my kid to sleep, but on information about sleep. VERY helpful.

My favorite will always be Waiting for Birdy: A Year of Frantic Tedium, Neurotic Angst, and the Wild Magic of Growing a Family by Catherine Newman - it describes perfectly the angst involved in having a second child and her stories about her first child are hilarious.

I read, "Easy to Love, Difficult to Discipline", by Becky Bailey. This book provided a love based rather than fear based parenting approach which is completely unnatural to me given my upbringing. I have to laugh at some parts as they seem completely ridiculous, but for most parts, this book has helped me a ton. I've

so far I've liked '25 Things Every New Mother Should Know' but I need to read more!

The Tao of Motherhood is lovely. I forget the author and have lent it out. Ditto for Even If Your Baby Eats This Book Things Will Still Be OK. The title of the second book might be slightly different, it's been a while since it was on my shelf . . .

"The Girlfriend's Guide" series is the best, down to earth and tells it like it is!

to be honest, i haven't read a good baby book yet. we bought what to expect during the first year, but it was a total waste of money. looking at these posts, gives me a good starting point...thank you!

The Baby Owner's Manual: Operating Instructions, Trouble-Shooting Tips, and Advice on First-Year Maintenance (Owner's and Instruction Manual)

Unconditional Parenting by Alfie Kohn - best parenting advice I've received by far.

Over the last nine years (almost ten..in about 13 days..lol) I have read quite a few books on parenting..especially with my first pregnancy and birth. And I have come to the conclusion that no one book can offer you complete, up-to-date, completely individualized, up on recent trends..etc. advice AT ALL! I had to get through bad advice, some bad parenting books (more theory then necessary :), and some awesome books to where I am now. I did enjoy the What to Expect series (which is now with my sister who just had her first baby!) and the 3am book. I am definately curious about the Let's Panic book...I have definately been there :)

How to potty train your child in one day...Ugh I disagreed with just about everything in the book!!!

I loved the Girlfriends Guide to Pregnancy. It made me laugh when I really needed it!

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