Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Beyond Jennifer & Jason, Madison & Montana by Jennifer Rosenkrantz & Pamela Redmond Satran

**This review posted the day after my 2nd daughter, who went 3 days without a name, was born.**

Summary: Quoted everywhere from Parenting to The Wall Street Journal, with over a million copies of their books in print, bestselling authors Linda Rosenkrantz and Pamela Redmond Satran are the baby-name experts. In this fresh and expanded new edition of “the best baby-naming book ever written” (The News Journal), they offer irresistible lists of names you won’t find anywhere else, along with their trademark wit and insight on the most important questions—and answers—for expectant parents: style, popularity, image, sex, tradition, & family. From Product Description.

My Review: This book is so much more than a list of the 30,000 name possibilities that exist in the world, a concept that makes me go cross-eyed. Instead it presents a useful dialogue that meshes well with the conversations you'd have with...well... if not with your husband, with your girl-friends, on WHY you are naming your baby thus.

I read it cover to cover when choosing the name of our first born and found it meshed very well with my thoughts on naming a baby, specifically - unique but not nuts and heaven forbid too trendy. However, I think if you have a differing naming philosophy this book would meet your needs as well and you'd find yourself agreeing with the authors.

Because the book is broken into naming topics, instead of alphabetical lists of name, you can really think about what you are looking for in a name. It acts as a spring board for conversation while still listing most of the reasonable names in our society (it dabbles into cross-cultures too, but seems to be addressed to us Americans). For example it lists alphabetically 30-40 names that are perceived as creative, 30-40 that are "manly" or "feminine," 30-40 that are biblical, etc. Then, at the end of the "discussion" if you want to peruse a list you can do what I did for our second child and just read through the index at the back - sure it might not have 30,000 names listed but do you really need that (or more importantly, do you really want to risk choosing the worst of the 30,000 possibilities?)

My Review: 5 stars - I'd highly recommend this over any of the books that just list names.

In One Sentence: I'll be honest, this is the only baby name book I've used but I'm still claiming it is the best.


Heather said...

Ironic that this posted the day after your baby was born...without a name chosen! :)

MindySue said...

As I understand it, they have selected a first name but are still working on the middle. I just didn't want to reveal their decision until it was final. Except to say that I LOVE the first name they have currently chosen.

Sweet Em said...

Trust me, the irony is not lost. Particularly since we had MONTHS of "maybe the baby will be born this week" conversations so you'd think we'd have picked a name by 38 weeks!


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