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What if there was a parenting advice book that started from the premise that you were already an expert? What if there was a book that gave you a big warm hug and said “you got this mama”?

How about if that book was also full of evidence based advice presented in a supportive and non judgemental way? How about if it gave you solutions to problems and told you that all that crazy newborn shit that your child is pulling is all totally normal?

That’d be a pretty awesome book, wouldn't it?

It would be the sort of book that would have made the first time mum I was in 2009 realise that my instincts were more valuable than the opinion of a “baby expert”. It would have given me the tools to know how to deal with the scare-mongering of health visitors and the sniffing disapproval of family members.

If only such a book existed .....

I was asked to review Sweet Sleep: Nighttime and Naptime Strategies for the Breastfeeding Family and I have to admit, part of me was wondering whether this book was going to heal my rift with “parenting books” or whether it was going to give me an excuse to buy a dart board.

The children and I are unanimous in our view, this book will only be a force for good in your life.

It will not make you feel like a failure for your choices, it will not pretend that your difficulties are a result of you doing something wrong.

It WILL, however, give you ideas and tools to help you achieve safe co-sleeping, breastfeeding friendly night times. It will remind you of what “normal” really looks like and it will quote the experiences of other parents who are going through EXACTLY the same problems as you!!

The book is written in an informal conversational style which I really loved. If you are used to an instruction manual approach to parenting books then this might throw you a bit because this book is more about offering research, suggestions and then telling you to take what works and do what feels right.

Oh yes, your eyes are not deceiving you, this book puts parents front and centre as the experts in their own children (the scandal!) and while it might offer suggestions and guidance, it’s not going to tell you that what you are doing is wrong.

It covers everything from the early days when you don’t know which way is up, to the days of toddler sleep regression and nap dropping. It looks at how to help sleep to happen and how to keep it happening. In fact, it looks at pretty much every permutation of every sleep issue you can even think of, including possibly the best ever come back to the question of how you will have sex if your baby is in your bed
“Well we didn't make our first baby in a bed, so I don't see why we would need to make the other ones there”
If you are one of those normal parents, with a normal baby, who doesn't sleep 12 hours a night straight off the bat, then this book might well save your sanity.

If you know a parent who fits that description, be their best friend forever; buy them a copy and place it quietly on the chair beside them before retreating to the kitchen to make them some tea. 
They may well name their future child after you in gratitude.

Pinter and Martin Publishers sent me a copy of Sweet Sleep: Nighttime and Naptime Strategies for the Breastfeeding Family to review. You can purchase your copy directly from their website or from any other good book retailer.

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