10 Books To Help You Survive the First Year of Parenthood

by Keith Rice

Photo credit: DaniloAndjus, E+ Collection/Getty Images

As I write this, my little guy is approaching the one-year mark. I’ve spent 12 months in the trenches, made it out (mostly) intact and (relatively) unscathed, and, most importantly, my kid has grown into an energetic, curious bundle of fun and delightful weirdness. Those first days of a parenting are a truly bizarre and oftentimes scary time, though. You leave the sanctuary of the maternity ward to be thrust into the wilds of parenting. They basically tell you, “Good luck! Watch out for that soft spot on the baby’s head!” They don’t hand you an instruction manual to life on your way out.

In our first year, we sleep trained, battled nap schedules, and experienced countless diaper mishaps. We faced the unique challenges of traveling with a baby. We had many sleepless nights. But we survived. And you know what? It was amazing — all of it. That first year of parenting is a beautiful, messy blur of a journey. Fortunately, it’s a journey that’s now well-charted. There are a host of great parenting books that can serve as your instruction manuals and help you navigate the ups and downs of your first year as a parent. Here are a few of our favorites.