This is now my favorite guide to childbirth. I loved it. I've already begun recommending it to expectant mothers of my acquaintance. Ina May states that she set out to write a book which would affirm for women that, by and large, they are capable of giving birth naturally. She succeeded at her goal admirably.
Reading it felt like having a cozy chat with a loving, wise, and educated grandmother. I much preferred this book to Ina May's 'Spiritual Midwifery,' perhaps because she doesn't come across as quite so hippy in this newer book. She sticks to generally used anatomical words (if you've read 'Spiritual Midwifery,' you know what I have in mind by contrast). I appreciated her reasons why a woman would want to give birth without pain medications.
I would like to have several copies of this book on hand in order to loan/give to my friends. I think this book would be a wonderful read for anyone wanting a solid guide to childbirth, a refreshing view of childbirth, a well-articulated rationale for natural childbirth, or reassurance that natural childbirth is not the freaky choice that the modern medical establishment would lead you to believe. Five stars.