Imagine my surprise when, last week, my editor at Johns Hopkins Press emailed me to ask that I check over the Amazon page for my book. What? There’s an Amazon page?! As far as I knew, my book wasn’t coming out until the fall. I did a search for my name and book title on Amazon, that great vault of hundreds of thousands of books, this is what I found:
I guess this is really happening, dear readers! And it’s happening sooner than I thought. The book will be released on July 2, and it’s available for pre-order now!
This is super exciting but also terrifying at the same time. It means that some people might actually read my book. They might like it or they might not, and that’s just the way it is. I hope you read it and like it, though. I would not have had the motivation or courage to write this book if not for all of you – smart people who read my blog and comment on it. You showed me that there are other parents out there, like me, who are curious and want to know more about the science of parenting. You showed me that tone matters – that if we are going to communicate and support each other, we have to start from a place of respect for each other. You showed me that our stories matter, and that nuance is important. As I dug into the science of parenting decisions, I found examples where science gives us a clear course of action but just as many where the science is so murky that we are left to follow our hearts, well-informed as they may be, and hope for the best.
Another surprise when I scanned through my book’s Amazon page for the first time was the reviews. I hadn’t seen these yet, and they brought tears to my eyes. What I was trying to do with this book came through to these readers, and that made me so happy. Here’s what several wonderful folks had to say about my book:
Finally, someone has brought some science—and some sense—to the mommy wars. Should be required reading for all new (and old) parents.
~Emily Oster, Brown University, author of Expecting Better: Why the Conventional Pregnancy Wisdom Is Wrong—And What You Really Need to Know
Alice Callahan has written a breakthrough book, combining the compassion, warmth, and angst of a mother with the measured reasoning of a scientist. She helps parents not only understand how science works, but how they can access that science to answer their questions. She’s found a way to access the scientist in all of us.
~Paul A. Offit, MD, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Yes! An easy-to-read, fascinating, nuanced review of the science behind new parents’ biggest health questions. Many of these issues—infant sleep, breastfeeding, vaccines—have or will hit your ‘Should I panic?’ button. With gentle guidance, Alice Callahan puts your fears to rest.
~Tracy Cutchlow, author of Zero to Five: 70 Essential Parenting Tips Based on Science (and What I’ve Learned So Far)
Too many of today’s parents treat science as a weapon, using it to justify some choices and condemn others. Yet, most don’t fully understand what science can and cannot tell us. By giving parents a comprehensive understanding of how science relates to parenting, Alice Callahan has helped us turn this weapon into a tool for peace. Callahan untangles basic scientific concepts, reveals the realities and limitations of research, and advocates for a measured approach to parenting science that eschews absolutes and acknowledges nuance. The Science of Mom is a rare gem in the parenting canon—smart, sensitive, and a lifesaver for a generation of parents caught in the nebulous spider’s web of Internet ‘wisdom.’
~Suzanne Barston, author of Bottled Up: How the Way We Feed Babies Has Come to Define Motherhood, and Why It Shouldn’t
Families routinely search for health information. The Science of Mom makes it easy collecting evidence for health decisions and putting it into perspective with a mom-to-mom connection. Callahan’s advice is thoughtful, backed by science and feels fueled of love. She is willing to provide powerful advice when detailing the science and safety of vaccines. Keep this book in arm’s reach as you support your infant for calm and direction.
~Wendy Sue Swanson, MD, MBE, FAAP, Seattle Children’s Hospital, author of Mama Doc Medicine: Finding Calm and Confidence in Parenting, Child Health, and Work-Life Balance
Fascinating! Think of all the controversial, hot-button topics that parents obsess about in a child’s first year—from vaccines and feeding, bed-sharing to sleep training. Weighing the scientific evidence, Callahan offers balanced insights and in-depth answers—a far cry from the oversimplified advice prescribed by many ‘parenting experts.’ The result: a must-have guide that’s substantive and extremely engaging.
~Jena Pincott, author of Do Chocolate Lovers Have Sweeter Babies? The Surprising Science of Pregnancy
I’m so grateful to these thoughtful people, all authors themselves, for taking the time to read my manuscript and write short reviews.
I hope you’ll check out my book and let me know what you think!