Bumpology: The myth-busting pregnancy book for curious parents-to-be

by Linda Geddes Non-fiction

  • UK & Comm Transworld Publishers (January 2013, Ed. Susanna Wadeson)
  • US & Canada Simon & Schuster (Ed. Anjali Singh )

A myth-busting guide for curious parents to be.

Will the shape of my bump tell me the sex of my child?
Can fetuses learn?
Why don’t pregnant women topple over?
Can curry trigger labour?
Is baby poo “cleaner” than adult poo?
And why do babies look like their dads?

From the moment a woman discovers she’s pregnant, she becomes obsessed with the little life that’s developing inside her. Questions she never previously dreamed of begin to consume her waking hours. Suddenly, Googling: “what is my baby doing this week?” becomes a pressing issue, and scouring pregnancy forums for a definitive answer to whether the shape of your bump can predict the sex of your child seems like a highly productive use of the day.

Unfortunately, such efforts are usually thwarted by a dearth of intelligent and accessible information. Books and websites abound with basic facts like “a 12 week-old fetus can perform simple movements”, but they don’t explain that such movements might provide hints as to the personality of the future child. Neither do they answer questions like whether a fetus can learn, when they become conscious, and what amniotic fluid tastes like.

As a newly pregnant science journalist, Linda made it herjob to indulge hercuriosity and tease out the answers to some of these questions. What started as a 14-part blog during the latter weeks of her pregnancy, developed into an 18-month obsession with the science of bumps, birth and newborn babies. The result is Bumpology, a compendium of questions, answers and fascinating nuggets to satisfy even the most fertile reaches of a pregnant woman’s imagination. Its contents will enliven any dinner party or post-natal coffee morning. It might even make breastfeeding more interesting.