43 books like The Breast Book

By Emma Pickett,

Here are 43 books that The Breast Book fans have personally recommended if you like The Breast Book. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of The Politics of Breastfeeding: When Breasts are Bad for Business

Gill Rapley Author Of Baby-Led Weaning: The Essential Guide

From my list on western society’s obstacles to breastfeeding.

Why am I passionate about this?

I got hooked on breastfeeding when, during my health visitor training, our class had a lecture from Drs. Penny and Andrew Stanway, who wrote the original Breast is Best. I breastfed my own children, became a breastfeeding counsellor and lactation consultant (IBCLC), and championed breastfeeding as a health visitor and midwife. I then worked for 14 years with the UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative, teaching and supporting healthcare staff to improve standards of care for breastfeeding mothers and babies. Throughout, I gained a huge respect for babies’ abilities in relation to breastfeeding. This directly influenced my belief in their capacity to continue feeding themselves when they start solid food, which is my current focus.

Gill's book list on western society’s obstacles to breastfeeding

Gill Rapley Why did Gill love this book?

This was the book that really opened my eyes to the power of marketing, and the impact this can have on the way babies are fed – in all countries of the world. It’s an absolute classic – a seminal work. It showed me how the infant formula industry (and increasingly the baby food industry in general) uses any tactics it can to influence and distort the dialogue around infant feeding. I was especially horrified to learn how, as a health visitor and midwife, I could unwittingly be used to promote products and practices that had the power to undermine breastfeeding, even while I thought I was supporting mothers and babies to do it.

By Gabrielle Palmer,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Politics of Breastfeeding as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

As revealing as "Freakonomics", shocking as "Fast Food Nation" and thought provoking as "No Logo", "The Politics of Breastfeeding" exposes infant feeding as one of the most important public health issues of our time. Every thirty seconds a baby dies from infections due to a lack of breastfeeding and the use of bottles, artificial milks and other risky products. In her powerful book Gabrielle Palmer describes how big business uses subtle techniques to pressure parents to use alternatives to breastmilk. The infant feeding product companies' thirst for profit systematically undermines mothers' confidence in their ability to breastfeed their babies. An…


Book cover of Breastfeeding Uncovered: Who Really Decides How We Feed Our Babies?

Gill Rapley Author Of Baby-Led Weaning: The Essential Guide

From my list on western society’s obstacles to breastfeeding.

Why am I passionate about this?

I got hooked on breastfeeding when, during my health visitor training, our class had a lecture from Drs. Penny and Andrew Stanway, who wrote the original Breast is Best. I breastfed my own children, became a breastfeeding counsellor and lactation consultant (IBCLC), and championed breastfeeding as a health visitor and midwife. I then worked for 14 years with the UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative, teaching and supporting healthcare staff to improve standards of care for breastfeeding mothers and babies. Throughout, I gained a huge respect for babies’ abilities in relation to breastfeeding. This directly influenced my belief in their capacity to continue feeding themselves when they start solid food, which is my current focus.

Gill's book list on western society’s obstacles to breastfeeding

Gill Rapley Why did Gill love this book?

Amy nails the many aspects of today’s UK society that make breastfeeding so difficult for mothers and their babies. She looks at the myriad subtle – and not-so-subtle – ways in which breastfeeding is discussed and presented, so that it comes across as something laudable in theory but unrealistic and undesirable in practice: great if you can do it, but keep it to yourself and don’t frighten the horses. She also explores the many, seemingly unrelated, notions we have about how babies should be cared for, such as where and for how long they should sleep, which are quite simply incompatible with what babies really need, and with helping breastfeeding to work. Never mind pressurising women to breastfeed – how about we just support them to do it!

By Amy Brown,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Breastfeeding Uncovered as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Across the world mothers are urged to breastfeed, but in Western society many find this a difficult task. Those who stop can feel demoralised and unsure as to why such a desired, encouraged and biologically normal behaviour can appear so challenging in reality. Breastfeeding Uncovered examines why this continues to happen, revealing how complex social and cultural messages work against new mothers, damaging the normal physiology of breastfeeding and making it seem unmanageable. Dr Brown removes the focus from the mother and instead urges society to rethink its attitude towards breastfeeding and mothering and instead to support, encourage and protect…


Book cover of Breastfeeding and Medication

Gill Rapley Author Of Baby-Led Weaning: The Essential Guide

From my list on western society’s obstacles to breastfeeding.

Why am I passionate about this?

I got hooked on breastfeeding when, during my health visitor training, our class had a lecture from Drs. Penny and Andrew Stanway, who wrote the original Breast is Best. I breastfed my own children, became a breastfeeding counsellor and lactation consultant (IBCLC), and championed breastfeeding as a health visitor and midwife. I then worked for 14 years with the UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative, teaching and supporting healthcare staff to improve standards of care for breastfeeding mothers and babies. Throughout, I gained a huge respect for babies’ abilities in relation to breastfeeding. This directly influenced my belief in their capacity to continue feeding themselves when they start solid food, which is my current focus.

Gill's book list on western society’s obstacles to breastfeeding

Gill Rapley Why did Gill love this book?

Sadly, one of the many obstacles to breastfeeding lies within the healthcare system. For too long, education about how breastfeeding works has been severely lacking in the training of doctors, pharmacists, and a host of other disciplines. The result is that time and again, women who seek help – often for conditions unrelated to lactation – are given advice or care that fails to take into account their feeding choices, Many are told that they must stop breastfeeding in order for either them or their baby to receive treatment. As a pharmacist and breastfeeding counsellor, who, for years, ran the UK’s Drugs in Breastmilk helpline virtually single-handed, Wendy’s knowledge in this area is second to none. In the hands of health professionals, this book has the power to bring about huge change.

By Wendy Jones,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Breastfeeding and Medication as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Sadly, women often feel they have no alternative but to give up breastfeeding, having been prescribed or purchased medication. In many cases, however, this is unnecessary. This book outlines the evidence base for the use of medication during breastfeeding.

Breastfeeding and Medication presents a comprehensive A to Z guide to the most frequently prescribed drugs and their safety for breastfeeding mothers. Evaluating the evidence for interventions and using a simple format for quickly identifying medications that are safe or unsafe to use, it also highlights those drugs where there is inconclusive evidence. Additional contextual information makes this the most complete…


Book cover of The Big Letdown

Gill Rapley Author Of Baby-Led Weaning: The Essential Guide

From my list on western society’s obstacles to breastfeeding.

Why am I passionate about this?

I got hooked on breastfeeding when, during my health visitor training, our class had a lecture from Drs. Penny and Andrew Stanway, who wrote the original Breast is Best. I breastfed my own children, became a breastfeeding counsellor and lactation consultant (IBCLC), and championed breastfeeding as a health visitor and midwife. I then worked for 14 years with the UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative, teaching and supporting healthcare staff to improve standards of care for breastfeeding mothers and babies. Throughout, I gained a huge respect for babies’ abilities in relation to breastfeeding. This directly influenced my belief in their capacity to continue feeding themselves when they start solid food, which is my current focus.

Gill's book list on western society’s obstacles to breastfeeding

Gill Rapley Why did Gill love this book?

Kimberly writes from personal experience and from the heart. She pulls no punches. Her book covers a lot of the obstacles you’d expect – societal attitudes to breastfeeding, the formula industry, and so on – but it’s her chapter on ‘the feminist fallacy’ that really spoke to me. I’ve always been baffled by the lack of support that feminist writers have shown for breastfeeding. They talk about it as a chore, as a restriction on women’s freedom, not as something amazing that a woman’s body can do. Kimberly challenges this thinking head on, fearlessly exposing the flawed thinking that has, in the name of equality, blindly followed an agenda set by men, with the result that motherhood is devalued and breastfeeding is framed as simply an issue of ‘choice’. Her conviction provides me with the hope that we can reverse this. Brilliant.

By Kimberly Seals Allers,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Big Letdown as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Breastfeeding. The mere mention of it has many mothers wracked with anxiety (how will I manage with work, other kids, what if I don't make enough milk?) or guilt about not doing it (will I be hurting my child ifl choose not to breastfeed? what will people think of me if I choose not to?). This hot-button issue is one we've talked about repeatedly in the media and in celebrity culture. Remember when Angelina Jolie posed for the cover of W nursing her new-born? Oh, the controversy! And when Barbara Walters complained about the woman breastfeeding next to her on…


Book cover of Taking Up Space

Jenn Bishop Author Of Free Throws, Friendship, and Other Things We Fouled Up

From my list on middle school basketball books that show there’s more to life than the game.

Why am I passionate about this?

Despite playing precisely one year of competitive basketball myself, as a gangly sixth grader in the 1990s forced to play without her (desperately needed) glasses and capable of only granny-style free throws, I fell in love with the sport later in life as a superfan of my local college basketball team, the University of Cincinnati Bearcats. I’m forever interested in players as human beings, and the way forces from their off-court life affect the game and vice versa.  

Jenn's book list on middle school basketball books that show there’s more to life than the game

Jenn Bishop Why did Jenn love this book?

Body image issues affect so many of us, and it can feel particularly acute in the middle school years, when our bodies are undergoing so much change. Though it’s been decades, I palpably remember how strange my growth spurt felt from the inside and how it changed my confidence.

In Alyson Gerber’s excellent book, Sarah is used to excelling on the basketball court, but when the shots stop falling, she’s quick to blame her changing physique and takes matters into her own hands to rectify things by drastically altering her eating habits.

Gerber handles this material with empathy and compassion, never talking down to the reader or getting preachy. Whatever your gender (body image issues are hardly limited to girls), there’s so much to relate to in this story.

By Alyson Gerber,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Taking Up Space as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

From beloved author Alyson Gerber comes another realistic contemporary novel perfect for fans of Judy Blume. 

Sarah loves basketball more than anything. Crushing it on the court makes her feel like she matters. And it's the only thing that helps her ignore how much it hurts when her mom forgets to feed her.
But lately Sarah can't even play basketball right. She's slower now and missing shots she should be able to make. Her body doesn't feel like it's her own anymore. She's worried that changing herself back to how she used to be is the only way she can…


Book cover of Breasts and Eggs

Michael Grothaus Author Of Beautiful Shining People

From my list on reads set in Japan.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve spent a lot of time in Japan, and my new novel, Beautiful Shining People, is a direct result of two profound experiences I had there. The first was when I was hiking through the hills of Kyoto late one night and turned around to see a glowing creature–some have said they think I saw a kami. The second experience happened when I was in Hiroshima at the Peace Park. I immediately started crying, seeing all the schoolchildren learning about the horrible atrocity committed against their ancestors. I have no idea why it affected me so much, but it was one of the most moving experiences of my life.

Michael's book list on reads set in Japan

Michael Grothaus Why did Michael love this book?

Where do I start? Breasts and Eggs is a fantastic example of contemporary Japanese literature.

The main character comes from a broken family that saw her mother die early. She feels that she is getting older and that if she is to ever have children she must act soon. But that’s only one small facet of this richly-drawn protagonist.

The novel also takes some great shots at the publishing industry, which, as a novelist, I found quite enjoyable. But most interesting is the history of this book. Kawakami originally wrote the first part as a novella, which was published in 2008.

Breasts and Eggs, published in 2019, saw her rewriting that novella and adding a second part to continue the story. If I have a favorite contemporary Japanese writer, it’s Mieko Kawakami.

By Mieko Kawakami, Sam Bett (translator), David Boyd (translator)

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Breasts and Eggs as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A BEST BOOK OF 2020
TIME Magazine・The Atlantic・Book Riot・Electric Literature・The New York Times (Notable Book of the Year)

The story of three women by a writer hailed by Haruki Murakami as Japan’s most important contemporary novelist, WINNER OF THE AKUTAGAWA PRIZE.

On a sweltering summer day, Makiko travels from Osaka to Tokyo, where her sister Natsu lives. She is in the company of her daughter, Midoriko, who has lately grown silent, finding herself unable to voice the vague yet overwhelming pressures associated with adolescence. The story of these three women reunited in a working-class neighborhood of Tokyo is told through…


Book cover of Celebrate Your Body (and Its Changes, Too!): The Ultimate Puberty Book for Girls

Shafia Zaloom Author Of Sex, Teens & Everything in Between: The New and Necessary Conversations Today’s Teenagers Need to Have about Consent, Harassment, Healthy Relationships, Love, and More

From my list on healthy sexuality and relationships.

Why am I passionate about this?

Shafia Zaloom is a health educator, parent, consultant, and author whose work centers on human development, community building, ethics, and social justice. Shafia has worked with thousands of children and their families in her role as teacher, coach, administrator, board member, and outdoor educator. She has contributed articles to The New York Times, The Washington Post, and numerous parenting blogs. Shafia’s book, Sex, Teens, and Everything in Between has been reviewed as “the ultimate relationship guide for teens of all orientations and identities.” It is one that “every teen, and every parent and educator - and every other adult who interacts with teens - should read.”

Shafia's book list on healthy sexuality and relationships

Shafia Zaloom Why did Shafia love this book?

I love this book because it encourages body positivity among girls who represent a vast variety of identities, especially when it comes to size. I appreciate that Taylor honors the possibility that a female-bodied girl may actually feel like their body and sex assigned at birth does not align, sometimes or all of the time, with how they feel about their gender. Not only does this book include “fascinating facts” boxes of practical and medically accurate information—and empathetically assures readers that “you have company” and are not alone—it pays tribute to body diversity and encourages body pride with its inclusive and affirming approach. You will find everything in here from the wonders of puberty and all of its changes, to how we can take care of our awesomeness with nutrition and physical activity. In addition to empowering girls to take responsibility for knowing the incredible power within their bodies as…

By Sonya Renee Taylor,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Celebrate Your Body (and Its Changes, Too!) as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

A body-positive guide to help girls ages 8 to 12 navigate the changes of puberty and grow into women.

Puberty can be a difficult time for a young girl―and it’s natural not to know who (or what) to ask. Celebrate Your Body is a reassuring entry into puberty books for girls that encourages them to face puberty and their body’s changes with excitement and empowerment. From period care to mysterious hair in new places, this age-appropriate sex education book has the answers young girls are looking for―in a way that they can relate to.

Covering everything from bras to braces,…


Book cover of Guy Stuff: The Body Book for Boys

Shafia Zaloom Author Of Sex, Teens & Everything in Between: The New and Necessary Conversations Today’s Teenagers Need to Have about Consent, Harassment, Healthy Relationships, Love, and More

From my list on healthy sexuality and relationships.

Why am I passionate about this?

Shafia Zaloom is a health educator, parent, consultant, and author whose work centers on human development, community building, ethics, and social justice. Shafia has worked with thousands of children and their families in her role as teacher, coach, administrator, board member, and outdoor educator. She has contributed articles to The New York Times, The Washington Post, and numerous parenting blogs. Shafia’s book, Sex, Teens, and Everything in Between has been reviewed as “the ultimate relationship guide for teens of all orientations and identities.” It is one that “every teen, and every parent and educator - and every other adult who interacts with teens - should read.”

Shafia's book list on healthy sexuality and relationships

Shafia Zaloom Why did Shafia love this book?

This book, for boys 8+ years, is a great ice breaker and conversation starter in preparation for the change puberty brings, by providing practical information for growing up in a safe and healthy way. Natterson’s down-to-earth tone and illustrations create the right balance of facts and humor. Topics cover everything from hair care to healthy eating, bad breath to shaving, acne to voice cracking, pubic changes to moodiness, peer pressure to bullying, and everything in between. Many times, our society leaves boys out of the puberty discussion. It’s important to change this social norm and include boys in this dialogue about puberty, health, and wellness. This impactful book is full of age-appropriate, medically accurate information, as well as addresses the nuances of cultural messages about masculinity and how boys may deal with and express their feelings. Natterson recently embraced this topic further and in more depth with her latest book:…

By Cara Natterson, Micah Player (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Guy Stuff as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 9, 10, 11, and 12.

What is this book about?

From the author of the bestselling Care & Keeping of You series! This book will provide you with the answers that will help you take care of yourself better, from hair care to healthy eating, bad breath to shaving, acne to voice changes, and everything in between. With tips, how-tos, and facts from a real pediatrician, it's the perfect book to help you learn about your body's changes.


Book cover of You Know, Sex: Bodies, Gender, Puberty, and Other Things

Rachel Ginocchio Author Of Roads to Family: All the Ways We Come to Be

From my list on anatomy, modern human reproduction, and family.

Why am I passionate about this?

For as long as I can remember, my parents answered any/all of my questions about the body, puberty, and sex; often giving me more information than I actually wanted! So when friends asked me questions, I was always eager to pass on my knowledge. Who knew that years later, it would land me a master’s degree in public health (MPH), jobs in sexuality health education, and a passion for writing about human reproduction and family formation? Plus, I have personal experience on the topic: I come from a three-generation family created through adoption and foster care; and overcame the trials and tribulations of infertility with the use of assisted reproduction. 

Rachel's book list on anatomy, modern human reproduction, and family

Rachel Ginocchio Why did Rachel love this book?

I’ve heard Cory Silverberg speak at various educator workshops, and I agree with his views that home is largely where sex education should take place.

Yes, of course most parents want it to happen in school as well, but home should be a place where kids can get honest answers to their tough questions. All of Silverberg’s sexual health books (they’re all worth checking out) are written to support these conversations, and You Know, Sex is no exception.

It covers all of sexual health: anatomy, puberty, consent, gender identity, sexual orientation, etc.; plus it boldly dives into controversial topics like pleasure, masturbation, and pornography.

I’m especially stoked about this book because the chapter on reproduction covers insemination, IVF, donor conception, and surrogacy. The explanations are straightforward, with informative, colorful illustrations. 

By Cory Silverberg, Fiona Smyth (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked You Know, Sex as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

2023 ALA RAINBOW BOOK LIST

A completely new approach to learning about puberty, sex, and gender for kids 10+. Here is the much-anticipated third book in the trilogy that started with the award-winning What Makes a Baby and Sex Is a Funny Word

"Silverberg's writing is fearless . . . Here is that rare voice that can talk about the hardest things kids go through in ways that are thoughtful, lighthearted and always respectful of their intelligence."   
—Rachel Brian, The New York Times Book Review

In a bright graphic format featuring four dynamic middle schoolers, You Know, Sex grounds sex…


Book cover of The "What's Happening to My Body?" Book for Boys

Rachel Ginocchio Author Of Roads to Family: All the Ways We Come to Be

From my list on anatomy, modern human reproduction, and family.

Why am I passionate about this?

For as long as I can remember, my parents answered any/all of my questions about the body, puberty, and sex; often giving me more information than I actually wanted! So when friends asked me questions, I was always eager to pass on my knowledge. Who knew that years later, it would land me a master’s degree in public health (MPH), jobs in sexuality health education, and a passion for writing about human reproduction and family formation? Plus, I have personal experience on the topic: I come from a three-generation family created through adoption and foster care; and overcame the trials and tribulations of infertility with the use of assisted reproduction. 

Rachel's book list on anatomy, modern human reproduction, and family

Rachel Ginocchio Why did Rachel love this book?

How could you not love a book written by a mother-daughter combo? It’s impossible.

Though the books in this series (My Body, My Self for Boys/Girls; What’s Happening to My Body for Girls/Boys) are getting a little old copyright-date-wise, they are packed with detailed information that I go back to over and over again, each time I pull together material for a puberty class.

Though they were written at a time before gender-inclusive language hit the scene, they cover the topics youth are most curious about; and provide checklists, games, inquiries, and other interactive activities for readers to work through. 

By Lynda Madaras, Area Madaras, Simon Sullivan

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The "What's Happening to My Body?" Book for Boys as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 10, 11, 12, and 13.

What is this book about?

Everything preteen and teen boys need to know about their changing bodies and feelings Written by an experienced educator and her daughter in a reassuring and down-to earth style, The "What's Happening to My Body?" Book for Boys gives sensitive straight talk on: the body's changing size and shape; diet and exercise; the growth spurt; the reproductive organs; body hair; voice changes; romantic and sexual feelings; and puberty in the opposite sex. It also includes information on steroid abuse, acne treatment, sexually transmitted diseases, AIDS, and birth control. Featuring detailed illustrations and real-life stories throughout, plus an introduction for parents…


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in puberty, breastfeeding, and gender identity?

11,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about puberty, breastfeeding, and gender identity.

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