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Nathalie Kirby
Assistant Social Media Editor

The Bump Book Club: Our Favorite Must-Reads for Summer

Whether you need an escape, want to feel empowered or are in the mood to make a mean meal for your family, we have the book for you.

As a parent or parent-to-be, when you (finally) have the chance to crack open or hit start on a book, you want to make your choice count. So what are people are loving right now? The Bump editors scoured the literary scene and ear-marked the good reads—from pregnancy and parenting books to Rom-Coms and cookbooks—that are totally worth diving into this summer. Take a peek at The Bump Book Club seasonal picks and see what calls to you.

Pregnancy Books

For the mom-to-be who wants to know what’s going on with her body.

Nurture: A Modern Guide to Pregnancy, Birth, Early Motherhood—and Trusting Yourself and Your Body

Truth: There’s more to pregnancy than tracking your growing baby bump. From fetal development updates to mindfulness exercises, nourishing recipes and birthing tips for every environment, author and doula Erica Chidi Cohen offers a comprehensive and inclusive look at pregnancy and childbirth in this masterfully written all-in-one guide. It’s an empowering and refreshingly judgement-free read that emphasizes the choices you have when it comes to pregnancy and early motherhood. From helping you decide whether a hospital or home birth is right for you to navigating the feelings around new motherhood, Nurture lays it all on the table.

Buy it: $13, Amazon.com

Mind Body Bump

Written by one of London’s most sought out fitness experts, Brit Williams, just-released Mind Body Bump encourages readers to celebrate and appreciate their ever-changing pregnant bods. In this easy-to-read fitness pick, Williams gives readers a peek into what’s happening to their bodies as well as baby’s, plus tips on how to work out safely (including helpful illustrations) and why staying active is so essential for, well, your mind, body and bump. It even includes monthly wellness agendas, complete with tasty recipes. If you’re ready to get moving and feel good, this one is for you.

Buy it: $15, Amazon.com

Parenting Books

For the mom or dad who could use a little advice.

How To Talk So Little Kids Will Listen

If you have a toddler in tow, you’re likely all too familiar with the “no” stage, tearful tantrums and massive public meltdowns. Consider How To Talk So Little Kids Will Listen the key to putting an end to it all (yes, really!). And if this name sounds familiar, it’s because it is! How To Talk So Little Kids Will Listen is written by Joanna Faber, daughter of Adele Faber, co-author of How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk—aka the OG parenting bible. Read this book now and thank us later.

Buy it: $14, Amazon.com

Cribsheet: A Data-Driven Guide to Better, More Relaxed Parenting, from Birth to Preschool

There’s a ton of conflicting parenting advice out there, which can be seriously overwhelming for new moms and dads. Enter Cribsheet, a guide that digs deep into the data to present parenting choices with some context, suggesting that conventional wisdom doesn’t always hold up. Author Emily Oster, an award-winning economist and mom of two, made a controversial splash back in 2013 with her book Expecting Better, and while Cribsheet won’t align with everyone’s beliefs, it proves to be a less polarizing and pretty refreshing read that might very well lift a weight off your stressed shoulders.

Buy it: $17, Amazon.com

Novels

For the parent who needs an escape.

The Gifted School

If you’re a fan of Big Little Lies, you’ll love Bruce Holsinger’s The Gifted School. Set in fictional Crystal, Colorado, this novel explores the lengths some parents will go to ensure their kids get ahead (think: this year’s college admissions scandal). If you’re looking for page-turning drama filled with not-so-friendly competition, The Gifted School is right up your alley.

Buy it: $18, Amazon.com

Summer of ‘69

No, we’re not talking about the hit Bryan Adams song, but Summer of ‘69 by Elin Hilderbrand is just as much of a summer jam. The historical novel follows the Levin family through one of the most significant summers of the twentieth century. Like the rest of the country, summer for these four siblings, who are staying with their grandmother and mother in Nantucket, is different. Even if 1969 is a little before your time, Hilderbrand’s novel is rich with nostalgia. So pull up your beach chair and get started on the book of the summer.

Buy it: $15, Amazon.com

Non-Fiction Reads

For the parent who wants to feel empowered.

And Now We Have Everything: On Motherhood Before I Was Ready

If there’s one thing we know to be true, it’s that learning to laugh at the mess is as important in parenting as anything else. And learning to laugh is exactly what Meaghan O’Connell does when she stumbles into motherhood after getting accidentally pregnant in her twenties. And Now We Have Everything: On Motherhood Before I Was Ready is a raw yet hilariously poignant memoir that challenges the unrealistic expectations mothers are held to. Be prepared to laugh (and cry) your way through O’Connell’s unexpected ascent to motherhood.

Buy it: $11, Amazon.com

The Unwinding of the Miracle

If you need a good cry, we recommend picking up a copy of The Unwinding of the Miracle. After narrowly escaping death in Vietnam at the hands of her grandmother, who urged her family to euthanize her because of her blindness, Julie Yip-Williams manages to surpass all expectations and becomes a Harvard-educated lawyer, wife and mother. But at 37, Yip-Williams is diagnosed with terminal cancer, a diagnosis that unravels life as she knows it. Through humor and brute honesty, The Unwinding of the Miracle serves as a reminder to live life wholeheartedly.

Buy it: $14, Amazon.com

Cookbooks

For the mom or dad who loves to get creative in the kitchen.

Complete Children’s Cookbook

The Complete Children’s Cookbook is the perfect way to get your little ones excited about cooking. It comes equipped with large-scale images of each step and easy-to-follow instructions so young cooks can wear the chef’s hat in the kitchen. Whether you and your kiddos are whipping up breakfast, lite-bites, main meals or tasty desserts, consider this your go-to for fun beginner recipes.

Buy it: $15, Amazon.com

Plenty: Vibrant Vegetable Recipes from London’s Ottolenghi

Know your way around the kitchen? You’re going to want to check out Plenty. This vegetarian cookbook by international chef Yotam Ottolenghi highlights the vibrancy of veggies in restaurant-level recipes. Whether your embrace a meat-free lifestyle or you’re just looking for a fun way to help your kids fall in love with veggies, Plenty is a gorgeous cookbook showcasing mouth-watering meals.

Buy it: $19, Amazon.com

Romance Novels

For Rom-Com lovers looking to indulge.

More Than Words

Raised by her father in the glitz and glam of New York City, protagonist Nina was propelled through life with privilege and responsibility. But when her father is diagnosed with cancer, Nina begins to question the trajectory of her life and the people it’s comprised of. Caught between love, life and death, Nina’s journey through heartache and self-discovery is as overwhelmingly joyful as it is thought-provoking.

Buy it: $13, Amazon.com

The Wedding Date

What do you do when you’re missing a plus one to your ex’s wedding? Invite a fake girlfriend to come with you. When an unexpected power outage lands two strangers in an elevator together, Drew Nichols invites his perfect stranger, Alexa, to attend his ex’s wedding with him. After a night of laughs they go their separate ways, only to be nagged by constant thoughts of one another. The Wedding Date is a charming story of love and fate that’s totally worth gushing over.

Buy it: $11, Amazon.com

Children’s Books

For extra-special storytime with the little ones.

Barnyard Dance

A sure sign of summer is visiting petting zoos with your little ones in tow. But if they’re craving a trip to the farm on their way to bed, we recommend picking up a copy of Barnyard Dance, written by legendary children’s author Sandra Boynton. This all-time favorite board book will take you and your minis through a musical journey with all your favorite farm animals. It’s rhythmic, full of fun animal sounds and short enough for a quick bedtime read.

Buy it: $5, Amazon.com

Little Feminist Picture Book

From Sacagawea to Maya Lin and Harriet Tubman, Little Feminist Picture Book is a great way to get a headstart on teaching your tots about some of the most important historic female icons. And you won’t have to worry about wandering eyes, since Little Feminist Picture Book boasts fun, colorful illustrations to keep the kiddos entertained the whole way through.

Buy it: $12, Amazon.com

Podcasts

For the parent who has their hands full.

The Boob Broads

If you’re looking for something new to add to your listening rotation, consider The Boob Broads, a brand new podcast dedicated to all things motherhood. Expect serious realness and comforting validation: The Boob Broads is hosted by five moms who met in a local nursing class after their babies were born. These ladies cover everything from pelvic health to postpartum sex and everything in between, making this the perfect podcast to listen to during those newborn days.

Listen in: podcasts.apple.com

Your 2 Dads With Sean and Julian

Dads, it’s your time to shine. With all the content that exists around motherhood (rightfully so–it’s no picnic), Your 2 Dads With Sean and Julian fills the void in the dad space and offers their hilarious take on fatherhood (it’s hosted by two comedians). Whether you’re a dad or just curious about what your partner is thinking, this podcast is guaranteed to give you a laugh.

Listen in: podcasts.apple.com

Published June 2019

Check out our past Book Club picks:

Photo: Oliver Rossi / Getty Images