Book Reviews by ICAN

By: Barbara Harper

In Gentle Birth Choices, Barbara Harper (nurse, former midwife, and mother of three) helps parents to plan a meaningful, family-centered birth experience. The DVD blends interviews with midwives and physicians and shows six actual births, including water birth, home birth, and vaginal birth. A powerful instructional tool for expectant parents, midwives, hospitals, birth centers, and doctors.

By: Elizabeth G. Bruce

A large percentage of women giving birth vaginally in the United States will receive an episiotomy. The vast majority of these surgeries are unnecessary and preventable. Using only the latest research, Elizabeth Bruce, MA, CCE, shows you how to take responsibility for your own birth. Helpful subjects include: Proven advice for avoiding perineal damage before, during, and after birth; Why a tear is preferable to an episiotomy; Optimal positioning for delivery; The benefits of waterbirth, doulas, and midwives; How to choose a good care provider; Building your confidence to birth. Inspiring stories from real women who have birthed babies, large and small, with their perineums intact!

By: Elizabeth Davis, Suzanne Arms (Photographer), & Linda Harrison (Illustrator)

An excellent and thorough resource for parents-to-be who are thinking about birthing their child assisted by a midwife, or who are concerned about the medical establishment's over-control of birth.

By: Robert Bradley

The Bradley Method of childbirth emphasizes support and trusting in the body's ability to give birth naturally. This book shows the husband (or partner) how to support the mother during birth, and also gives details on exercises and breathing techniques to be practiced ahead of time in preparation for and for use during birth.

By: Marie Mongan

Mongan's method combines hypnosis with learned relaxation and visualizations to help reduce fear and tension in childbirth. Without this tension, the author claims that birth can be more comfortable and even painless.

By: Suzanne Arms

This classic takes a critical look at the medicalization of childbirth and at obstetric and midwifery care around the world.

By: Suzanne Arms

Like the original Immaculate Deception, this book is a treasure! Suzanne Arms tells the truth about modern childbirth and mother-baby care -- and she does it with great clarity and compassion.

By: Ina May Gaskin

Drawing upon her thirty-plus years of experience, midwife Ina May Gaskin shares the benefits and joys of natural childbirth by showing women how to trust in the ancient wisdom of their bodies for a healthy and fulfilling birthing experience. With the exception of her discomfort with VBAC after single-layer closure of the uterus in a previous cesarean*, Ina May's Guide to Natural Childbirth gives expectant mothers comprehensive information on everything from the all-important mind-body connection to how to give birth without technological intervention.  read more »

By: Carl Jones

A quick and easy read, Mind Over Labor teaches deep breathing and visualization exercises used to create a more relaxed, comfortable, and calm birth experience.


By: Naomi Wolf

Interweaving personal narrative and reportage and pouncing with particular vehemence on what she considers to be the dumb, patronizing misinformation in the bestselling guidebook What To Expect When You're Expecting, Wolf reveals that birth in this country is often needlessly painful. The author talks of the misconceptions around becoming a mother and of her own experiences that helped her distinguish between the lies and the truths of motherhood.

By: Kim Wildner

A look at how our beliefs influence our birth experiences.

By: Marshall H. Klaus, et al

A doula is an experienced labor companion who provides continuous emotional support and assistance before, during, and after birth. Through research with over 2,000 women, the authors show that the presence of a doula shortens labor by an average of two hours, decreases cesarean sections by over 50%, decreases the need for pain medication, helps fathers participate, and more.

By: Karis Crawford & Johanne Walters

Although the author's opinion is that home birth is only chosen by 'extremists*,' this book still has great natural birth after cesarean information with emphasis on knowing your reasons behind wanting a VBAC being crucial in your success and staying motivated. *This view is not that of ICAN. ICAN believes that it is an individual woman's right and responsibility to make an informed decision on which birthing environment is best and safest for her and her baby. Please refer to the White Paper on Choosing Your Birthplace.

By: Susan McCutcheon

Since the Bradley method was first introduced, a growing number of expectant parents have opted for natural childbirth, knowing that it's safer than medicated or surgical delivery. This book provides information on what to expect during each stage of birth, and gives sound advice on how to prepare physically for labor using the Bradley method breathing and exercises.

By: Henci Goer

Anyone working to improve the childbearing experience and help women avoid unnecessary intervention has encountered numerous "obstetric myths" or "old doctors' tales." And while the evidence in the medical literature may be solidly, often unequivocally, against whatever "the doctor said," without access to that evidence, the pregnant woman is quite reasonably going to follow her doctor. Research-oriented and number-heavy yet understandable, this book is an attempt to make the medical literature on a variety of key obstetric issues accessible to people who lack the time, expertise, access, or proximity to a medical library to research concerns on their own.

Syndicate content
International Cesarean Awareness Network, Inc. ("ICAN") maintains this website as an online information and communications service. Use of this website is at your own risk. The information contained on or provided through this website is intended for general consumer understanding and education only, is not intended to be, and is not provided as a substitute for professional medical advice. Nothing contained on or provided through the website is intended to be or is to be used for medical diagnosis or treatment. The website is presented by ICAN for the sole purpose of disseminating general health information for public benefit. Always seek the advice of your midwife, physician, nurse or other qualified health care provider before you undergo any treatment or for answers to any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. The website and any information provided on the website are not intended to constitute the practice of or furnishing of medical, nursing, or professional health care advice, diagnosis, consultation or treatment or services in any jurisdiction.

Except for information, products, services or merchandise clearly identified as being supplied by ICAN, ICAN does not operate, control, supply, endorse, warrant or guarantee any information, products, services or merchandise available on the website or through the Internet generally in any way. You understand and agree that ICAN does not make any express or implied warranties, representations or endorsements of any kind whatsoever (including without limitation, warranties of title or non-infringement  or any warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose) with regard to the website, or with respect to any information, products, services, merchandise or other material provided on or through the website. ICAN does not warrant or guarantee the accuracy, completeness, correctness, timeliness, or usefulness of any information, products, services, merchandise or other material provided through the website. ICAN makes no warranty or guarantee that the website will be uninterrupted, timely, secure, or error free.

In no event will ICAN be liable to you or anyone else for any decision made or action taken by you or anyone else in reliance upon the information contained on or provided through the website.

Copyright © 2013 International Cesarean Awareness Network