Top Ten Picture Books For Overcoming Bedtime Woes

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Everyone knows the cry of I want a glass of water! Bedtime can be a real problem, with children not wanting to settle down to sleep, being scared of the dark, or even frightened of being left alone. These picture books address the issues in a gentle manner, helping kids better understand their fears and thus overcome them. It's not all serious though: there's a good smattering of humour too, which makes them great fun to read. Why not tell us about your favourite books for overcoming bedtime woes?


One More Hug For Nutmeg by Caroline Jayne Church

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Nutmeg the mouse won't settle down for the night. She wants a drink, cuddly toy and a blanket. This is a sweet picture book that will ring true for every parent and child. Full review...

Oliver Who Would Not Sleep by Mara Bergman and Nick Maland

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The ideal wind down story for the child who doesn't go off to sleep easily. The rhyme is wonderful - they'll be telling you what comes next very quickly and as a bonus it's a pleasure to read aloud. The illustrations will delight both parents and children. Full review...

When Dragons Are Dreaming by James Mayhew and Lindsey Gardiner

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A gentle bedtime book about a dragon who doesn't want to go to sleep, and his newfound fairy friend. It's perfect for quietly reading to the very youngest book fans as they nod off. Full review...

Billy Monster's Daymare by Alan Durant and Ross Collins

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Billy Monster has daymares - he keeps dreaming that he's seen a child and terrified that one might be lurking under the bad. Highly recommended by The Bookbag. Full review...

Darkness Slipped In by Ella Burfoot

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A great bedtime book for children who are scared of the dark. By personifying Darkness, it makes everything much less frightening. It's a fun story in its own right too. Full review...

How Do Dinosaurs Say Good Night? by Jane Yolen

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Illustrations in this board book are fantastic, and the text and settings would appeal to parents struggling with children kicking up a fuss at bedtime while the dinosaur theme (with a twist) would appeal to the little 'uns. Full review...

Emily Brown and the Thing by Cressida Cowell

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Fear of the dark turned on its head as Thing needs Emily Brown to stay with him so that he isn't alone in the dark. A marvellous book to help a child talk about its fears. Highly recommended. Full review...

Bella and Monty: A Hairy, Scary Night by Alex T Smith

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Monty may be the biggest scaredy-cat this side of Hairy Maclary and chums, but he's got brave Bella to help him through his fears. A Hairy, Scary Night is a great read for anyone trying to overcome fears of their own. Full review...

Small Billy and the Midnight Star by Nette Hilton and Bruce Whatley

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A delightful tale for the three-to-five-year-old age group, telling as it does of Billy's wonder at the night sky and how he worries when the star disappears. There's all the childish wonder at something so huge and incomprehensible and fear that it isn't permanent. Full review...

Just Like Tonight by Amber Stewart and Layn Marlow

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Button the bear feels a bit scared before bedtime, so his father tells him the story of when he was born. A sweet tale that strikes all the right notes. Full review...

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