Achtung Baby: An American Mom on the German Art of Raising Self-Reliant Children
An Entertaining, Enlightening Look at the Art of Raising Self-Reliant, Independent Children Based on One American Mom’s Experiences in Germany
An NPR "Staff Pick" and One of the NPR Book Concierge's"Best Books of the Year"
When Sara Zaske moved from Oregon to Berlin with her husband and toddler, she knew the transition would be challenging, especially when she became pregn...more
I am not a mother, i do not have children i take care of (at least not the human kind -do furry kids count?!?)
BUT i was interested in this because i am German and i always interested to see an American share their option on Germany. Because honestly most of the time? Its HORRIBLE and wrong and just... in which year are you living because we are no longer in world war 2?
So yes, okay?
I only requested this book because it has a german title and the subtitle of an ...more
The book's author is Sara Zaske. She heads to Germany with her husband, who gets a job there, and their toddler-aged daughter. They live in Germany for several years, ...more
What Zaske shares is that German culture and German sc ...more
My partner is German, and I now have several in-laws raising small children in Berlin, so much of what this book describes was not news to me. In fact, it provided a very good "crash course" on modern Germanity, in addition to modern German parenting. For example, Germany's processing of its painful history - WW2 and the Holocaust - and how ...more
Unfortunately this book also has a strident, preachy tone that really grated on my nerves. So often I found myself frustrated because while I agr ...more
I majored in German, lived in Germany, have worked for many years with Germans, and am married to one. There is so much about the German culture and language that feels like home to me, including how children are raised there. But without having been raised there myself I feel like I didn’t fully understand WHY Germans parent the way they do. My husband d ...more
As a middle-class Ind ...more
Obviously I'm simplifying th ...more
Ultimately left me disappointed.
While Zaske acknowledges that parenting practices can vary a lot in Germany, there are still a lot of commonalities that she witnessed in her time living in Berlin. Basically, most Germans practice what we would call "Free-Range Parenting" (otherwise known as "parenting" in many European countries): they let t ...more
Much of the life they describe in Berlin is one I'd like for my own kids: a culture where it's the norm for kids to walk to school and playgrounds on their own, and where kids are ex ...more
It reminded me of Sarah Moss memoir Names for the Sea but with more of a focus on the raising of children, if you liked that one you may enjoy this one. ...more
Ever since journalist Pamela Druckerman’s Bringing Up Bébé hit the best-seller list by telling American moms and dads to stop hiring sitters and just take their toddlers along to fancy restaurants like Parisians do, a rush of cultural anthropology has taken over the parenting-advice industry. It seems l ...more
I read this mainly to see if the author's experience and portions of my experience would align. All of our kids were born in Germany and we spent our first several years as parents there, though not in Berlin like the author.
The author got the extreme pain of German bureaucracy right (though perhaps even a bit understated, if I'm honest), which was a big thing that drove us from Germany. She covered the pregnancy and birth process, which aligned mostly with ours - though she was lucky ...more
Her second kid was born in Germany, so she goes over what it's like to be pregenant and give birth there. The book then follows her two kids through infancy, preschool (Kita), and elementary school. While her family moved back to the US before her kids could get past ele ...more
Her new book about how Germans raise self-reliant children, ACHTUNG BABY, is available now from Picador USA.
She also has young adult fantasy novel THE FIRST (2012)