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Baby 411: Clear Answers & Smart Advice for Your Baby's First Year
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Baby 411: Clear Answers & Smart Advice for Your Baby's First Year

4.22  ·  Rating Details ·  1,918 Ratings  ·  271 Reviews
Dr. Spock meets Judge Judy--finally a parenting book that separates fact from fiction. What if you could bottle the wisdom of all those parents who've come before you...and combine them with the sold medical advice from an award-winning pediatrician? Baby 411 is the answer.
Paperback, Second Edition, 512 pages
Published October 10th 2005 by Windsor Peak Press (first published 2004)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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May 26, 2010 Natali rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The only reason I am not giving this book 5 stars is because it freaked me out a little. I'm not sure it is wise to read about every little disease, virus, and genetic abnormality that your baby could have before you give birth. Nevertheless, this is a GREAT reference for all things parenting in the first 2 years of a baby's life. I'm glad I read it so that in case anything should go wrong with my little one (heaven forbid!), I'll know where to start.

This book also has helpful guides to online
Apr 23, 2010 Laura rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've read enough of this now to mark it as "read". I really don't intend to read through the whole doom and gloom section on rare illnesses. Much like Baby Bargains, it was helpful, but a bit sloppy and repetitive. It was hard for me to trust the authority of the contributing pediatrician when she has bad reviews from local parents. (I live in the area where she works, so came across info on her practice when I was researching pediatricians.) Nonetheless, I did refer to it many times and did tak ...more
Brian Rosenblat
Dec 28, 2012 Brian Rosenblat rated it it was amazing
super helpful the first time around. not so fluffy like some fo the other books in this genre. more like a FAQ for how to take care of a baby- which is exactly my speed.

this time around, didn't quite finish re-reading it. much more helpful the first time. 2nd time parent means fewer questions. more than advice i this time i could use sleep....

but would recommend to any first time parent!
A Yao
Mar 18, 2016 A Yao rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Generally innocuous tips but some snide and sanctimonious bits, which I can do without in an advice book on parenting. Claims that night nursing causes cavities, so makes me worry what other inaccurate information the authors are spreading.
Derek Hao Hu
Dec 14, 2015 Derek Hao Hu rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: parenting
This is a great book for me as a new father. I love the way the book is being organized as Q/A pairs where most of the time the authors answer the questions clearly and with REFERENCES! This is really important as there are many controversial and contrasting views about these common baby issues, e.g. how we should perform sleep training. I really enjoy the authors enumerating possible references where I can refer to if I feel I want to know about this topic or where this idea comes from.

Aug 05, 2016 Andralynn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I haven't read this book from cover to cover (who really does that with books like these?), but I have found myself going back to this book over and over with questions about my new baby. My pediatrician gave us this book at our baby's two-week checkup, and I have looked at it for something multiple times a week since. I'm pretty sure I have avoided calling the doctor's office because of the excellent information in this book. It's incredibly reassuring to look something up that my baby is doing ...more
Christina Hager
Good information and tidbits but I could do without some of the chiding and what feels like sanctimonious comments. One example that sticks out in my mind was among the lines of there's something wrong with you if you're still nursing your child to sleep/in the middle of the night by the time they are getting teeth (like 6 months). just kind of struck me that as new parents we don't need passive aggressive lecturing interspersed with important safety information
Dec 07, 2015 Becks rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Definitely the best baby book I read. Good for both a straight read-through and for use as reference. I had a few quibbles with a few answers that essentially said "the science suggests that X is OK but why not avoid it out of extreme caution?" but it was far more evidence-based than most books. I also find it interesting that this book was recommended to me by a number of people with wildly different parenting philosophies.
Sep 02, 2011 Kristen rated it liked it
Standard fair as every other "Baby's 1st year"-type book, so I would say skip--except for 1 chapter. The chapter on sleep has a great summary and ratings of the basic baby sleep theories out there. Definitely worth the read of that chapter to save you reading all the sleep books--or at least only reading the one for your favorite theory.
Jul 18, 2011 Flora rated it it was ok
Shelves: nonfiction
I regularly fantasized about setting this book on fire. The organization was great, but it seemed every time I looked there was chastisement for something or other, and a fair amount of me-me-me, it worked for me and so it must for everyone. It was a necessary reference for about six months, and then I decided I didn't need to deal with this tone anymore.
Apr 18, 2013 Leanna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: parenting
This book makes me wish I hadn't spent so much time/money wading through all the *other* parenting how-tos. I want my time/money back!

Seriously amazing - comprehensive, an emphasis on the actual science, very well organized, helpful tone and it even manages to be funny on occasion. I feel like I stumbled on the holy grail of parenting.
Apr 22, 2012 Jennifer rated it it was ok
Pretty good but, there are better baby books.
Nov 09, 2011 Sonya rated it did not like it
Could I give this no stars without it looking like I did not vote? Okay, I'll give it the one star but that's quite generous.
Jan 21, 2017 Vidya rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kids
Excellent reference guide to caring for a newborn written by docs. Bookmarked a ton of things and imagine I'll be looking back at this a lot.
May 30, 2016 Kate rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
one of the better baby books i have gotten from the library
Jan 07, 2017 Sarah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the most useful books I found the first year of George's life. This really helped me get a handle on what I needed to worry about and what not to worry about. It also helped me understand his ever-changing needs and rapid development and growth. A true life saver for my sanity! It's also easy to use and reference throughout the year.
Alice Sibley
Feb 15, 2017 Alice Sibley rated it it was amazing
Great informational book. Easy to follow, gives practical tips and made me feel confident and informed as I entered parenthood. Also divided by sections so it can be used as a reference
May 05, 2017 Shannon rated it really liked it
Lots of good references. I will pull out the book and read a chapter or section at a time. Some good pointers on introducing solids, cold/fever, introduction to sleep routines, etc.
Clocking in at 608 pages, I can unreservedly say that Baby 411 is a thorough and comprehensive guide to a baby's first year of life! That's not a bad thing. Hubby and I brought home our baby just over three months ago, and I can't get enough info. This is our first, so I pulled out this book many, many times. (Why is my baby drooling so much? Why is my baby crying? What on earth do you do to entertain a baby? Should he already be rolling over? When will he laugh?) So I do recommend this book as ...more
Feb 21, 2017 Jon rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm calling this one 'DONE' even though I probably haven't read the entire book. It isn't a cover to cover kind of book. You pick it up as needed. And we sure picked it up a lot this past year as our go-to resource for all things baby. It's a practical guide with lots of good information. Our little girl is 13 month now, so it's time to move on to Toddler 411. YIKES! Good luck new parents!
May 18, 2011 Sandy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: first-time parents
I needed a book that would answer all of my first-time-parent questions, even the "obvious" ones, and Baby 411 was perfect! Dr. Ari Brown, a practicing pediatrician and spokesperson for the American Academy of Pediatrics, wrote much of the book and *both* authors based their information and recommendations on solid, peer-reviewed, scientific evidence. They provide citations to back up their advice, lists of suggested books and websites, and appendices full of useful information. All of this is d ...more
Apr 17, 2011 Laura rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book served its exact purpose -- it was the 411 on all things baby related. I felt a little information overloaded after reading it from start to finish and I've probably forgotten most of what I've read already, but it was a good basic overview and I think it will be a good reference book in the future. I specifically liked that the authors (1) included a pediatrician (who is also a mom); (2) presented information in a (mostly) neutral fashion and (usually) indicated when they were express ...more
Jul 03, 2016 Jennifer rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book a lot when my son was a newborn and I was reassured by much of the information and the message that "you can't make a mistake during the first two months."

I recently read through the sleep section again now that my son is six months old and I'm not impressed. Over and over, the authors write about undoing the mistakes in a rather chastising manner. I'll admit that our current sleeping situation is less than ideal (hence why I read through the sleep chapter again), but the tone
Jan 03, 2011 Patti rated it it was amazing
My pediatrician, that wonderful, wonderful woman, gave this to me on our first visit to her office. This is my go-to guide for information about pretty much everything. Chapter 7, for example, is all about sleep, and it summarizes every single published sleep method, saving you the trouble of tracking down multiple books to help you figure out which strategy works best for you and your baby. Care and feeding and developmental milestones are also well-covered. Information is clearly presented and ...more
Jun 03, 2014 Justarius rated it it was amazing
If you only read one baby book, make it this one. I've read almost ten baby books, and this one is head and shoulders above the rest--yes, including "What to Expect." The reason is that this book is clear and concise, presenting the key points in an accessible fashion. This is important, especially when you are at wit's end in the middle of the night and desperately need an answer--and any parent will tell you that it's only a matter of time before this happens!

There may be other books that hav
Diana Welmerink
This is a fantastic reference for first time parents! It was recommended to us by a good friend who is also a pediatrician. It is very complete with information on every topic that a parent of a newborn could need. It can be difficult to read straight through, as you would read a normal book, but is a great reference. If you choose to start reading it before baby arrives, I would recommend waiting to start until later in pregnancy because there is so much information in the book and it can be ov ...more
Nov 25, 2010 Mel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: baby-stuff, read-2011
I appreciate the wealth of information in this book and the highly organized manner in which it is presented. It is definitely my go-to guide whenever I am questioning anything baby related. This is a great resource to have for all of those times when the pediatrician isn't available. I would recommend it to all new parents with the disclaimer that I find some of the advice a little too stringent. I cringe at the sight of 4-year-olds walking around the mall with pacifiers in their mouths as much ...more
Nov 04, 2013 Melissa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: baby-parenting
Such a great reference book to have! This is not a book you need to read from start to finish, it's a book I purchase as gifts for all my expecting friends. It helps with all topics as you go through the first year with baby-but soon as your little one turns 1, the book almost becomes irrelavant as your child is no longer considered an infant. About a month after my daughters first birthday I found the topics I was looking up were not answering my questions, but the authors have gone ...more
Aug 18, 2009 jacky rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: first time parents
Shelves: baby-parenting, 2010
I found this better as an overall baby info book than what to Expect the First Year. The format of having all the information about a topic together would have been helpful at the beginning of my parenting career. Lots of great information that felt very reliable because the authors were very clear about being doctors. I found some good stuff in the sleep and discipline sections. However, I thought the authors were very strict on their ideas, which made me feel guilty when I was doing things dif ...more
Aug 05, 2012 Theresa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: parenting
very informative and helpful. a must read and i'll definitely keep it close during the first year.

update on review
My son is now 3 months old and I am constantly looking up something in this book. I had issues breastfeeding early on and this was my first resource. I use it now more to see what I can look forward to developmentally and if there's anything I need to be working on with him. Right now bedtime and naptime routines are what we are focusing on. I find a lot of consistency with this book
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“It depends on the baby. Stick with the perfume-free and dye-free rule, especially for babies with sensitive skin. But, that does NOT necessarily mean that your baby’s laundry needs to be washed separately with his own expensive detergent. The whole family’s laundry can be done with a product like ALL Free and Clear or Tide Free. For the baby with sensitive skin, pre-wash items that will be touching him. It may also be helpful to double rinse the laundry. And remember to avoid dryer sheets (they all contain perfume).” 0 likes
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