Whether you’re a new parent, or have decades of experience, raising a child is incredibly challenging. No matter what you do, you won’t get everything right. But you can improve your chances of success and therefore reduce the number of mistakes that you make. All of us can benefit from reading and educating ourselves.

But that doesn’t mean that every book is valuable. Some authors don’t have the experience or expertise that they need to educate you, which is why it’s critical that you can decipher between the value and the garbage. In this guide, we’ll allow you to make a purchasing decision easily and to help you become a superior parent.

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Product FAQs

1. Are the best parenting books necessary?

Maybe, you don’t need a parenting book to do a good job, but it can help you. Parenting books are designed to help you to figure out the complex problems that you will face; they aren’t there to give you the answers. Therefore, they can not only improve your parenting; they will make you a better person and allow you to deal better with issues in general. They can:

  • Teach you how to communicate better
  • Show you the importance of patience
  • Learn how to stay calm under stress

The average person will benefit greatly from reading at least a few of these books. These small improvements will improve the life chances of your children, and for this reason, a lot of people go out of their way to consume as much material as possible. However, there is a point where you’re not going to get much more out of others’ experiences.

2. Which parenting book is right for me?

They typically organize and are written based on age. The problems that you will face when your child is a toddler will be very different from when they are in their teenage years. The skills to succeed in both situations are similar, but they aren’t identical. By picking one that is aimed specifically at your kids, it will be much more helpful.

3. How much does it cost?

Books are relatively affordable and can be free. You can go to your local library and borrow most books without cost, which is great for those on a low income. If you can afford it, buying books from Amazon will allow you to read them at your own pace and keep them for reference later. For informational text, the latter option is significantly more helpful.

4. Is reading the best way to learn?

For most people, learning from the previous experiences of other parents and experts is the most efficient way. You could also watch YouTube videos or listen to podcasts, but reading tends to stick into your brain because you take the time to focus on the material and consume it by yourself in silence.

RELATED READ: Best Pregnancy Books

How We Reviewed

Woman with books flying over her

To create this guide we spent a large amount of time and effort to research all of the products that we listed and many others that didn’t. We ranked and reviewed them based on the information that we gathered, as well as the reviews that customers left. This data allowed us to analyze and rank them to find the best parenting books for you.

Price Range

The price of books can range greatly depending on whether it’s paperback or hardback, new or old and used or fresh. Typically, books range from a couple of bucks for old and used copies, while newer versions could cost as much as $40. Given the value you can gain from these texts, the price seems fair to us.

Book stores tend to have higher prices because the overhead costs for the business are high. While buying copies online can be much lower. For some versions, you can save 50 percent or more when buying online versus in person at a physical location.

Top 10 Best Parenting Books

“What to Expect the First Year”

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The most [amazon link=”076115213X” title=”popular book”] in the space, it has over 11-million copies since Heidi Murkoff, and Sharon Mazel published it. This book is an all-time great and tells expecting parents everything that they have to look forward to over the coming year and beyond. For first time parents, it’s a critical book that everyone must own.

If you’ve never had a child before, it’s hard to know what is normal, as well as understanding what signs to look for. This book will give you all of the information that you need, as well as telling you how to deal with specific everyday situations. These problems have standard solutions, and this information will help you to deal with them smoothly.

The value that this text brings to the market is the fact that it’s incredibly comprehensive. There isn’t a single book that you can buy and gain as much information. Despite not being extensively long, you’ll find within these pages all of the data and information that you could ever need to know what to expect in the first year of being a parent

The great thing about this book is that it doesn’t only have descriptive and practical advice; it is also heavily illustrated to show you how to care for your baby and do first aid. These small tidbits are vital and something that you will appreciate beyond measure if you ever need to use these tips. For this reason, it’s a must-have for every new parent who is nervous about giving birth.

If there were one book that you had to choose, this would be a fantastic choice. For new parents, it will give you all the advice that you could need, without anything extra or any undue words. Likewise, it’s a good value for money and prevents you from having to buy multiple products which would slowly share the same experience and information.

“The Happiest Baby on the Block”

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For those who are expecting children or raising [amazon link=”0553381466″ title=”babies”], knowing how to calm them and care for them is vital. There are small areas where you can drastically improve your performance as a parent, as well as preventing issues that your child might have. Can you imagine how much you would appreciate a reduction in tears and drama?

Having your children and babies sleep through the night instead of crying and whining all night can be enormous. It might allow you to focus harder at work or to have a better relationship with your parent, greatly changing the trajectory of your life. Truly, being able to fix these small but frustrating situations is the hardest part of being a parent on any given day.

The author is an assistant professor at the USC school of medicine, which ensures that the advice comes from a reliable professional that you can trust. He talks about child development and what you can do to ensure that your baby develops effectively, without as much stress for you and your partner as parents. His advice is invaluable and worth the small cost.

Thousands of readers highly recommend this book because it’s enjoyable and easy to read. While other texts are overly detailed and can leave you stuck in the details, Karp does a fantastic job of ensuring that you get what you need without any issues. After an hour of reading, you can guarantee that you’ll feel like you’ve gained value and info.

According to multiple reviewers, it’s the best parenting book that they have purchased. For this reason, we think that it’s a must-have for new parents and those who are raising babies and toddlers. While it might not be as relevant for those with older children, these lessons can be helpful throughout life and might benefit all parents.

“How to Talk, So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk”

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Adele Faber, the author of [amazon link=”B005GG0MXI” title=”this book”], talks about how you can communicate effectively with your children. It’s aimed at parents of children between five and eighteen; although depending on your needs, it could work outside of this range. The key is that it’s about developing communication skills, which aren’t specific to parenting.

These tactics and tips can help you throughout your life, not just as a parent and therefore his book is incredibly valuable for everyone. However, for parents, it’s particularly important because it will teach you how to talk to your children. Knowing how to phrase things in a manner that will encourage them to listen is vital, as well as ensuring that you reciprocate.

Being a parent is challenging, especially when you’re much older and know that you have wisdom that your children won’t accumulate for decades. In this position, it can be hard to communicate with your kids because you can’t explain why and how you know everything that you do. This book is for you because it will teach you powerful techniques for this situation.

The book is also available on Audible. If you prefer to listen rather than read, Audible is a fantastic way for you to learn from experts, especially when you’re driving or commuting to work and don’t have time to do anything else in this period.

According to The Boston Globe, this is the ultimate “parenting bible” which comes with a timeless and beloved message about how to communicate with your children. Even years from now, this message will stand true because it teaches you about biology and how the genetics of your children ensure that specific techniques and tactics of communication will work.

“1-2-3 Magic”

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If you’ve had children before, you’ll know that they can be incredibly frustrating at times. You love them dearly, more than they will ever know, but staying calm and ensuring that you are an effective and happy parent can be challenging. The lessons in [amazon link=”149262988X” title=”this book”] are critical to raising children through to adulthood and will serve you well.

You’ll find that you learn a variety of different techniques. Being calm and practical isn’t much more than a mindset and a collection of skills, but if you don’t know them, it can be incredibly confusing and complex. This book will ease you into the process and ensure that you are a more skillful parent going forward.

The author, Thomas Phelan, is an expert in the area and will show you how to deal with even the most misbehaved children. Although he doesn’t promise an instant turnaround, he ensures that implementing these tactics over the years will lead to a healthier relationship with your child and a better future. If you want to maximize your parenting skills, get this book.

The truth is that keeping your calm is a huge percentage of parenting. For those who have never had kids, that might sound silly. But when you have one baby screaming and another child whining, it’s hard to prevent yourself from exploding when the third has a complaint about the gravy on their dinner. Having these skills will save you from exploding.

According to reviewers, it’s a fantastic piece of text that comes packed with information that they have never thought of before. While some parenting books are common sense and therefore not particularly useful, this is the opposite. For parents of grown and growing children, knowing how to develop discipline and thoughtfulness is critical to your future.

“The Soul of Discipline”

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In a similar vein, Payne talks about [amazon link=”1501212060″ title=”discipline”] and simple parenting in the book, “The Soul of Discipline.” It centers around the topic of parenting with a simplistic approach, that focuses on toddlers through to teenagers. The idea is that by finding the right balance between warmness, firmness, and guidance, you can parent the most effectively.

The book itself covers a variety of complex topics but with excellent explanations that make it a joy to read, rather than a struggle. For the average person, you’ll be able to learn a lot from an expert in the field, without needing to become one yourself. Through the book, Payne shows you multiple techniques that you can use to guide your children better.

This book doesn’t tell you that you must do it this way and openly admits that every child is different. However, the author mentions that you might be able to improve your parenting skills by following these techniques which apply to most situations. By finding the right balance, you can communicate more effectively with your kid and get the result that you want.

“The Teenage Brain”

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If you are parenting teenagers, you need all the [amazon link=”0062067850″ title=”help”] that you can get. Any parent will tell you that this is the hardest period of a person’s life because they are developing and changing so quickly. No matter what you do, your kid won’t become the person that you want, which is why it takes both the parent and the teenager to make this situation work.

If you don’t know how to survive and thrive in this environment, you’re going to end up arguing and fighting, rather than having productive conversations. Being good parents means making hard decisions, but ideally, you should do what you can to avoid them in the first place. This book will help you to guide and offer practical advice to your teenager.

In our opinion, for the parents of teenagers, this is the best book on the market. Jensen is a neurologist, and she comes at the topic from the perspective of science, to discuss the changes that teens undergo and how your parenting should reflect these differences. Her advice is practical and scientific at the same time, the perfect balance for us to understand.

“Parenting Beyond the Rules”

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If you’re looking for another guide to [amazon link=”1631468855″ title=”raising teenagers”], the Parenting Beyond the Rules book by Connie Albers is a fantastic choice. It talks about the difficulty of the situation but also how you can switch it to become a bonding moment. Through challenges, we can build stronger relationships, which will ensure that you stay close through adulthood.

Many parents find that after the teenage year’s many children start to drift, which can be challenging and feel thankless. For this reason, it’s vital that parents do what they can to form a deep relationship at this stage. Doing so with an adult child is more challenging and not recommended by experts, which is why the teenage years are pivotal.

As a parent, you might feel your grip loosening on your children, as they become more impacted by their peers and teachers. But the truth is that you still have an enormous impact on their confidence, joy, and future. As a parent, it’s your job to learn how to manage this situation effectively, and the author will help you through this tough and painful transition.

“How To Raise a Boy”

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While some experts argue that both sexes are the same, most would agree that [amazon link=”0143133209″ title=”young boys”] are significantly different from girls, regardless of parental and societal influences. There are basic hormonal differences that can make a difference; the author argues, which is why it’s critical that parents know how to raise a boy effectively.

The problem, Reichert argues, is that the way we raise boys can often lead to them becoming unsuccessful men. He believes that it’s necessary for us to empower them and to build strong connections so that we can nurture their growth. By doing so, he believes that we will have a healthier society and better men in the future.

On the flip side, he also looks at how traditional gender norms for men might make it tough for parents to raise healthy boys. He believes that bringing some traditionally feminine aspects to their lives can be beneficial, particularly with regards to physical and emotional trauma, which they shouldn’t have to push through.

“Diaper Dude: The Ultimate Dad’s Guide”

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Chris Pegula, the famous author, talks about what it’s like to be a [amazon link=”0143110268″ title=”first-time”] Dad, trying to survive the initial two years of having a child. The great thing about this book is that he talks openly, discussing topics that most parenting experts don’t want to consider. For men who haven’t had children before, it’s a wealth of knowledge that’s worth purchasing.

This book offers tremendous value for money. While not as complex and scientific as others on this list, it brings a practical and experiential tone to parenting. For many men, this will be a welcome relief, because it’s nice to hear from other men who are struggling with the pressures and challenges of being a new father.

“Early Childhood: Practical Parenting from Birth to Six Years”

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The [amazon link=”1930429002″ title=”go-to”] guide for early childhood, raising a child through their initial years is tough. You can’t always be reaching out to a doctor or nurse to check if things are normal, which is why this book is valuable. With a wealth of scientific knowledge, it’s the ultimate guide to raising a kid and will help you with the most challenging steps along the way.

Our Verdict

In our opinion, there is no one perfect book for any given parent. Depending on the age of your child and the issues that you’re worrying or struggling with, one book will be better than another. For expecting and new parents, “What to Expect the First Year” is the clear winner, while for communication you need “How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk.”

Likewise, for raising boys, the clear winner is “How To Raise A Boy: The Power of Connection to Build Good Men” by Reichert. By thinking critically about your situation and what you need to work on you can ensure that you’re only reading books that are helpful for you and your circumstances.