Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Blog Tour: Working Woman’s Pregnancy Book

When I received the Working Woman's Pregnancy Book in the mail from MotherTalk, I decided that the best time to read it would be over lunch at work. After all, I'm a busy working mom who used to be a working pregnant woman. Context is everything. Then, it quickly dawned on me that if I were reading a pregnancy book at work I would have to first explain that, no, I’m not pregnant. Then, I would have to get into why I am reading the book, which might reveal my bloggity nature, and I do not want those I work with to have that much information about what goes on inside my head. So, instead, I read the book before bed at night (with a cup of tea and a cookie...or two).

The Working Woman’s Pregnancy Book, by Marjorie Greenfield, M.D., comes across as a meld between a “what to expect” type book (although not at all like WTEWYE) and a pregnancy message board (minus the cutesy stuff and babydust). The many stages of getting pregnant, being pregnant, birthing, and life with a newborn are covered in a factual, straightforward way. Along with each subheading, the author provides quotes from various working women who contributed their thoughts to the book. The combination gives the reader a good factual foundation along with some real life instances of when a pregnancy did (or did not) follow the book.

Overall, I will say that I liked the book as a pregnancy resource. The real question, though, is did it take the extra step to become a working woman’s pregnancy resource? I would say that yes, it did. I liked very much that the book addressed issues specific to the working woman. Dr. Greenfield covered when to tell your boss and coworkers you are pregnant, how to deal with feeling not so great while at work, FMLA and other maternity leave issues, when (and whether) to return to work, daycare options, and dealing with special circumstances (like sick kids, appointments, etc.). The factual information was presented clearly, but did stay at a fairly basic level. Those women wanting more detail on either general pregnancy information or work-specific pregnancy information will want to include other resources in their repertoire. I am an information hound, so when I was pregnant with my son, I think I read at least six or seven pregnancy books. Each one had something to offer me that was different from the rest. Had the Working Woman’s Pregnancy Book been available when I was expecting Gabe, it would have been on my must-read list. At the time, I found the other pregnancy books definitely lacking in how to approach being at work and going back to work. Most books were a throwback to the days when women stayed home after having children. This book, on the other hand, assumes that you are working and will continue to work. It makes me feel less like a second-class mom.

That being said, I am not 100% sold on the “flavor” quotes throughout the book. At first, I liked the way they nicely balanced the factual information. I thought that they became a bit overdone by the end, though. And I especially disliked when there were more than two quotes used to offset a particular piece of factual information. But this book is not about quotes and snippets. It’s about getting a bit of practical advice to help the working woman with the ups and downs of pregnancy. And on that count, the Working Woman’s Pregnancy Book delivers as promised (sorry…couldn’t resist).

In the interest of full disclosure, in exchange for my review, I received a free copy of the book and a gift certificate.

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