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Download Bringing Up Bebe: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Bringing Up Bebe: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting Audiobook, by Pamela Druckerman Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (9,142 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Pamela Druckerman Narrator: Abby Craden Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: February 2012 ISBN: 9780449010884
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The secret behind France's astonishingly well-behaved children.

When American journalist Pamela Druckerman has a baby in Paris, she doesn't aspire to become a "French parent." French parenting isn't a known thing, like French fashion or French cheese. Even French parents themselves insist they aren't doing anything special.

Yet, the French children Druckerman knows sleep through the night at two or three months old while those of her American friends take a year or more. French kids eat well-rounded meals that are more likely to include braised leeks than chicken nuggets. And while her American friends spend their visits resolving spats between their kids, her French friends sip coffee while the kids play.

Motherhood itself is a whole different experience in France. There's no role model, as there is in America, for the harried new mom with no life of her own. French mothers assume that even good parents aren't at the constant service of their children and that there's no need to feel guilty about this. They have an easy, calm authority with their kids that Druckerman can only envy.

Of course, French parenting wouldn't be worth talking about if it produced robotic, joyless children. In fact, French kids are just as boisterous, curious, and creative as Americans. They're just far better behaved and more in command of themselves. While some American toddlers are getting Mandarin tutors and preliteracy training, French kids are- by design-toddling around and discovering the world at their own pace.

With a notebook stashed in her diaper bag, Druckerman-a former reporter for The Wall Street Journal-sets out to learn the secrets to raising a society of good little sleepers, gourmet eaters, and reasonably relaxed parents. She discovers that French parents are extremely strict about some things and strikingly permissive about others. And she realizes that to be a different kind of parent, you don't just need a different parenting philosophy. You need a very different view of what a child actually is.

While finding her own firm non, Druckerman discovers that children-including her own-are capable of feats she'd never imagined. Download and start listening now!

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Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Shani | 2/17/2014

    " I had to see what all the hype was about. While there were some excellent points alluding to the way the American culture of parenting has become addicted to trendiness, I found the point of view to be rather naive. It was as if she had never known another parent in her entire life until she became pregnant. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Claire | 2/15/2014

    " Oftentimes too repetitive, but otherwise an interesting and enjoyable non-fiction read for a Francophile with an interest in kids! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Lizzy Dromgoole | 2/13/2014

    " Ten stars. A must read for parents of any aged children really. I wish I had read this when my boys were babies to learn "le pause" and other helpful hints - yet it's not a how to parenting guide. It is an intellectual observation into French parenting vs American. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Franky Yuen | 2/11/2014

    " Thanks Pamela, i am certain i will bring my future kids up the French way! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ania | 2/10/2014

    " So many things rang true with this book and I picked up quite a few tips on how I want to raise my child. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jeannette | 2/8/2014

    " I started reading this only because a friend passed it on to me, but I was soon astonished by the insights it provided into the formation of national culture and character. One downside was that it overwhelmed me with regret for the way I raised my two sons. If I'd read this first, it would have significantly reshaped my thinking (or at least I feel like it would have.) But on the plus side, reading it now was not only revelatory but also highly entertaining. Druckerman had me laughing out loud in some places, and intensely interested in her experience at all times. Only halfway through did I realize that I'd read and really liked her first book (about different cultural attitudes toward infidelity.) May she write more! (which she clearly should be able to do with her very well-behaved and independent children!) "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kara | 1/23/2014

    " This book reads like a memoir mixed with cultural observations mixed with the social sciences. There are some great insights on child rearing in there, and the personal and accessible writing style makes it an addicting read. Loved it. There are definitely some things I want to start doing "the French way." "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Brandy | 1/17/2014

    " Loved it! Can't wait to start raising kids and using some French tricks! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Beth | 1/10/2014

    " I intended to browse through it, but I ended up reading the whole thing. It was funny and charming. And I have made the yogurt cake twice already with resulting rave reviews from friends. ;-) "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kristy Orton | 1/7/2014

    " I felt like it was definitely worth reading. I disagreed with a few things but there are plenty of elements I would like to incorporate, too. It was interesting and entertaining. Overall I am glad I read it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kate Zachry | 1/5/2014

    " Viewing a French perspective of parenthood gave me a richer perspective on my own parenting. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Syche | 1/2/2014

    " Interesting concepts. Good voice. Occasionally made me feel like a bad mommy. When I finished the book and could look back on the whole, though, I felt I gleaned some interesting and useful tidbits. (And that I'm not a bad mommy.) "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Katie Wickliff | 11/17/2013

    " Loved this book. Will revisit again and again. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Elyssa | 11/16/2013

    " Much better than I expected. The book is part expat memoir as well as a guide which illustrates the cultural differences between French and American parenting. Both aspects are equally interesting and well written. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Stephanie | 8/8/2013

    " quite insightful. wish i read this before having kids! "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Eileen | 5/20/2013

    " I didn't finish. It is about comparing child rearing in France to the US. I am not the right audience. It is more of a how to book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Alia | 1/17/2013

    " Interesting though probably not entirely accurate. Druckerman paints the American approach to parenting with a broad brush. But it did give me some food for thought. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Vianna Tedder | 8/7/2012

    " The book ends being complete at 81% because the works cited is crazy long. There are some really great insights to education and thinking. It's exciting to see that the US education system is adjusting to this European model. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Binet | 2/12/2012

    " I found the author extremely irritating, but it was very interesting overall. "

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About the Narrator

Abby Craden has been a professional actress and voice artist for over sixteen years and can be heard in numerous television and radio commercials, video games, and audiobooks. She has twice won the AudioFile Earphones Award.