Children’s literature has many notable options when it comes to sleep. To help you find the right books for you and your young reader, we’ve compiled a list of the best kids books about sleep.
Our list includes board books, picture books, and chapter books. Board books are best for babies and toddlers from ages newborn to 2 or 3. Picture books are generally great options for toddlers and for preschool and kindergarten age children. Picture books are especially enjoyable for adults to read aloud with young kids. The chapter books on our list are generally best for elementary through early middle school age tween kids. You can filter to sort by the best book type for your kid, and you can also use our table of contents to jump to particular topics you think your kid will enjoy.
When it comes to children’s stories about sleep, there are a variety of titles. This list covers everything, from classics like Good Night, Gorilla to popular sellers like The Napping House to some of our favorite hidden gems like The Going-To-Bed Book.
We hope this list of kids books about sleep can be a helpful resource for parents, teachers, and others searching for a new book! As you explore the list, please comment below to let us know what books you would add.
Dream Animals - Ideal for bed time reading, Dream Animals convinces children to close their eyes and discover who their dream animal might be—a fox? a bear? a narwhal?—and what dream it might take them to. With a perfect nighttime rhyme and gorgeous illustrations, this book is irresistible.
The Dreamer - Once, there was a pig who admired birds. But he could never join them. Or could he? Thus begins the journey of a pig with big dreams, and the perseverance to make them come true. He develops flight plans, builds experimental contraptions, and has far-flung adventures, but at the end of the day, his favorite thing to do is still to sit and watch for those he loves best: the birds. Il Sung Na creates a world at once whimsical and aspirational, where anything is possible and, yes, even pigs can learn to fly.
Dandelion's Dream - What if a dandelion became a real lion? With enchanting, ethereal art, this wordless story shares a world where reality can be transfigured by imagination. In a meadow filled with dandelion buds just about to flower, one dandelion blooms into a real lion. Roots and leaves unfurl into four tiny paws and a long tail with a fluffy yellow tuft. What a great, wide world there is to explore when you have paws instead of roots: there are fast trains to ride, regal ships to sail, and cities with lights as bright as Dandelion’s field in full bloom. But will a real lion ever be content to go back to being a rooted dandelion? Yoko Tanaka’s exquisite illustrations take us on an adventure where even the smallest seeds contain cosmic dreams.
Tomorrow Most Likely - Rather than focusing on going to bed—and what kid wants to think about going to bed?—this book explores all of the dreamy, wonderful, strange things the next day might bring. Whimsical, witty, and hopeful, this revolutionary rewriting of a classic goodnight book from bestselling author Dave Eggers and award-winning illustrator Lane Smith is a bedtime story for tomorrow ever after.
Go To Sheep - There are many ways to go to “sheep” with this delightful bedtime board book that’s perfect for reading aloud! You can sheep in your pj’s or just underpants. You can sheep all alone but sometimes you can’t. There are lots of ways to go to “sheep,” and here to show you all of the ways is an adorable…sheep! This bedtime book is perfect for a giggle before little ones drift off to sleep, just as the sheep does in this charming board book.
Hop Little Bunnies - From the illustrator of We’re Going on an Egg Hunt comes another book featuring lift-the-flaps, perfect for Easter and springtime! See the little bunnies sleeping till it’s noon Shall we go and wake them with a merry tune? Wake up, animals! Join four adorable bunnies as they rouse their sleepy animal friends. Because there are times to be quiet—and times to be loud! Beneath lift-the-flaps on almost every page, readers will hop with bunnies, cheep with chicks, baa with lambs, and meow with kittens. This interactive book, with a perfect read-aloud text inspired by a classic nursery rhyme, features sixteen lift-the-flaps and a fun story about quiet time and loud time. And with adorable art featuring lots of springtime animals, this is the perfect Easter gift!
Good Morning, Farm Friends - Rise and shine! This charming board book about farm animals waking up and getting ready for a busy day is perfect for the youngest readers. As the sun rises, the animals on a bustling farm get ready for the day. Pigs roll around in the mud, cows wait at the milking stall, and horses run through pastures. But is everyone awake? The rooster will make sure of it! The fun rhyming text and colorful illustrations in this delightful book will help little ones start their day off just right.
Cow Can't Sleep - Belle can’t sleep. The hay is too scratchy. So she tiptoes around the farm to find the perfect place to sleep. But what if the best sleeping spots are already taken? Belle causes an uproar on the farm…until finally she finds the perfect place to sleep! Good night! Bright, hilarious digital artwork gives just the right touch to this silly bedtime story.
Want to see books about farm animals?
Everyone Sleeps - “A wide-awake dog looks for a friend in a nighttime world full of sleeping animals”—
How Do You Sleep? - A pop-up book with flaps to lift, tabs to pull and plenty of surprises
Little Owl's Night - It’s evening in the forest and Little Owl wakes up from his day-long sleep to watch his friends enjoying the night. Hedgehog sniffs for mushrooms, Skunk nibbles at berries, Frog croaks, and Cricket sings. A full moon rises and Little Owl can’t understand why anyone would want to miss it. Could the daytime be nearly as wonderful? Mama Owl begins to describe it to him, but as the sun comes up, Little Owl falls fast asleep. Putting a twist on the bedtime book, Little Owl’s Night is sure to comfort any child with a curiosity about the night.
Hibernation Station - Everybody at the station! It’s time for winter hibernation! The sweet rhyming text of this book will calm even the most rambunctious kids and have them dreaming about what it’s like to hibernate. Young readers will be soothed and delighted as this story introduces them to different types of hibernating animals. The creatures on the train are preparing to snuggle into sleep, although with a passenger list that includes chipmunks, bears, snakes, hedgehogs, groundhogs, frogs, turtles, mice, bats, and more, there’s a lot of noise! Will the hibernating critters ever get to sleep? Take a trip to Hibernation Station to find out!
Anna, Banana, and the Sleepover Secret - Anna wrestles with a big secret at Isabel’s super-fun sleepover in the seventh book of this “fast-paced, fun, and funny” (Megan McDonald, bestselling author of the Judy Moody series) illustrated chapter book series about the joys and challenges of elementary school friendships. Anna and her friends love having sleepovers. So, when Isabel invites Anna and Sadie to spend the night at her house for the first time Anna can’t wait! Between pranking Isabel’s older sisters, make-your-own pizzas, and truth or dare this is going to be the best night ever. But when one of Isabel’s older sisters’ dares results in Anna breaking a really special vase, everything stops being all fun and games. Isabel’s sisters convince the girls they can hide it from their parents, but after her friends fall asleep, Anna lies on the floor in her sleeping bag, wide awake. At night, with the lights out and everyone else sleeping, Isabel’s house seems different. Unfamiliar. Not like home. Anna misses Banana terribly, and worst of all she feels really guilty keeping what happened a secret. If Anna doesn’t stay at the sleepover, everyone might get mad at her for ruining it, but if she stays and lets the secret slip about the broken vase, everyone might get mad at her for that instead. Anna and her friends share all their secrets, but can they help her with her secret dilemma?
The Three Little Pugs - Gordy, Jilly, and Zoie love to race, chase, and play pug-of-war. But most of all, they love snoozing in their big, cozy basket. Then one day just before their morning nap, the big bad cat decides to make himself at home in the pugs’ beloved basket! Will the pugs figure out how to keep him away before they get too sleepy?
Who Is Sleeping? - In a pair of bright lift-the-flap books full of animals, author-illustrator Petr Horácek gets little ones thinking with simple questions and easy concepts. Who is sleeping in the tree? Who is sleeping under the leaf? What about in the river? Children can say good night to several animals before settling down for a slumber of their own.
Want to see books about imagination and play?
The Napping House - A cozy bed, a snoring granny, a dreaming child, a dozing dog, a snoozing—WAIT! There’s a surprise in store, and little ones will want to discover it over and over again. So pull on your sleeping cap and snuggle in for a timeless cumulative tale that’s truly like no other. Don and Audrey Wood’s beloved picture book has sold more than one and a half million copies. To celebrate its birthday, the original hardcover book now has a fresh new design for both the jacket and interior, and the reproduction of the illustrations has been enhanced to better match the original artwork. Bonus downloadable audio begins with a reading of the story and follows with six original songs that are just as fun, jaunty, and sweet as the book itself. The music, originally produced in 1989, is based on the book and was written and performed by children’s musicians Carl and Jennifer Shaylen.
It's Time to Take a Nap - Based loosely on the Comden & Green song “I Said Good Morning,” jaunty verse takes readers to different landscapes in which a small boy is saying so many “good mornings” that by the time he is done, it’s nap-time! All are rendered in Barroux’s signature droll and endearing style.
But First, We Nap - Sloth wants to nap. Rabbit doesn’t. Who will win in the end? For every parent who’s struggled to get their child to nap, But First, We Nap is a hilarious book to replace the naptime wrestle. Funny illustrations depict Rabbit upping his antics while the ever-patient sloth repeats, “But first, we nap.” Finally worn out, Rabbit gives in, and the pair—and hopefully your child—snuggle and nod off. The perfect book for nap time!
The Perfect Siesta - It is very hot in the jungle and suddenly a nice breeze arrives. The jaguar wants to take a siesta. Just then he saw a coati and said, “Could you do me a big favor? Could you wake me up in exactly 10 minutes?” The coati wanted a siesta too, and asked the cockatiel to wake him up in exactly 10 minutes…
Stop That Yawn! - Pack your toothbrushes, but leave your pajamas and pillows behind for this one-of-a-kind bedtime story from Ida, Always author Caron Levis and bestselling illustrator LeUyen Pham. And whatever you do…DON’T YAWN! Gabby Wild has had enough of bedtime. Yawn, curl, snuggle, snore—what a bore! So instead of tucking in, she jets out—with poor Granny in tow—to a place where beds are for bouncing, hushes are shushed, and it’s never too late for ice cream. But sometimes, even when you grit your teeth and seal your lips, it’s impossible to stop that…YAWN! There’s a yawn on the loose! Can Gabby stop that yawn from spreading the snooze, or will it be lights out for Never Sleeping City?
When the World Is Ready for Bed (padded board) - Now in padded board book edition - a lovely, soothing lullaby with the familiar feel of a classic.As the whole world gets ready for bed, so does an adorable bunny family—brushing teeth, closing curtains, and sharing a story. The complete text of this sleepy, soothing book is captured in a new padded board book edition with sturdy pages and rounded corners.
It's Not a Bed, It's a Time Machine - Bedtime can be frightening—a dark room, spooky shadows, silence. Our narrator worries about what’s hiding in the dark, until his stuffed bunny, Floppy, tells him a secret: His bed is really a time machine. And they set off on an adventure into the past, to the coolest time ever—the age of the dinosaurs—to meet the coolest animal ever—the tyrannosaurus rex! This night’s sleep will span millions of years, but it’s so fun it’ll feel like it’s over in the blink of an eye. It’s Not a Bed, It’s a Time Machine is the ultimate goodnight picture book, showing that going to sleep is nothing to be afraid of. Instead, it’s just the beginning of a time-spanning adventure.
The Pout-Pout Fish and the Can't-Sleep Blues - Mr. Fish cannot fall asleep, but with help from his underwater friends, he finds a bedtime routine.
Want to see books about getting ready for bed?
Good Night, Wheedle - Toddlers will enjoy this retelling of Stephen Cosgrove’s charming story of Wheedle on the Needle filled with playful rhymes and featuring Robin James’s colorful artwork.
The Bear Who Couldn't Sleep - There’s no place like home when it’s time for bed. When Bear can’t sleep, he goes on an adventure and discovers the wonders of New York City—a parade, Central Park, hot dogs, and more! But when he finally gets tired and looks for a place to rest . . . he learns why it’s called the city that never sleeps. What’s a bear to do? Caroline Nastro’s gentle adventure and Vanya Nastanlieva’s engaging illustrations are sure to comfort and delight!
Sleepy Bears - Winter is here, and in winter, bears sleep. But how do you convince six not-so-sleepy bear cubs to go to bed? Mother Bear, of course, has found a way—with a cozy rhyme for each of them. Once again, beloved author Mem Fox enchants little ones—and their parents—with a tender bedtime story, irresistibly illustrated by Kerry Argent.
Goodnight Already! - Meet Bear. He’s exhausted. All he wants is to go to sleep. Meet Duck, Bear’s persistent next-door neighbor. All he wants is to hang out . . . with Bear. Jory John, author of Penguin Problems and The Bad Seed, and Benji Davies, creator of The Storm Whale, join together to create this standout hilarious picture book that will make bedtime memorable.
Want to see books about bears?
Sleepover Scientist #3 - Jada Jones is back for the third book of this popular, celebrated series perfect for STEM fans! Jada is hosting her first sleepover, and she has lots of cool scientific activities planned: kitchen chemistry, creating invisible ink, and even making slime! But when her friends get tired of the lessons and just want to hang out, can Jada figure out the formula for fun and save the sleepover?
The Yawns Are Coming! - Kids will be giggling through their own yawns as they enjoy this contagiously adorable bedtime story by the New York Times bestselling illustrator of the Ordinary People Change the World books. Two best friends have big plans for their sleepover. They aren’t going to go to bed at all—they’ll stay up playing all night long. But then it happens: The YAWNS show up! And as much as they try to outrun and hide from them, it’s no use: The Yawns catch them. Maybe they could keep going anyway, but then a DOZE arrives . . . followed by the dreaded SNORES. Will our heroes escape the SLEEPIES? Need a funny bedtime book that will stealthily bring on a snooze and still have your child asking to hear it night after night? Look no further than The Yawns Are Coming!
Sleepover Duck! - It’s Duck’s very first sleepover… and it’s in Cat’s barn! But a “Hooot, Hooot” is keeping Duck from getting any sleep. So Duck and Cat set off to search high and low to find out just who is doing all that hooting. Full of your favorite barnyard animals and their memorable sounds, young readers will love this delightfully funny and endearing story.
Henry and Boo - A charming story about friendship, tolerance, and unexpected consequences, with a compelling refrain that all readers will want to join.
Olive the Sheep Can't Sleep - Adorable Olive had a long day and is tired. She settles in for a good night’s sleep, but it isn’t easy. Using techniques based in neuroscience to help children relax, fall asleep, and stay asleep, author and child psychologist Clementina Almeida presents a charming bedtime story teaching parents techniques to help their child turn off . Why is it sometimes so hard for little ones to fall asleep? “Because,” says Almeida, “the world never ceases to surprise them, . . . their mind cannot ‘disconnect.’”
Time for a Nap - Too tired to hop. No zip, no zap . . . What time is it? TIME FOR A NAP! The perfect board book for tired toddlers. This charming and cozy entry in the Snuggle Time series is now in board format! Every day’s a busy day, with places to go, people to see, and things to do. But sometimes all that activity leaves a toddler tired and cranky. What time is it then? NAP TIME! With plenty of humor and fun, Phillis Gershator and David Walker capture a child’s resistance to some much-needed sleep—and the Illustrations show little bunny throughout the days of the week, adding a concept lesson to the great message about the necessity of rest.
Miss Fox's Class Shapes Up - Miss Fox’s students are too tired and cranky to get through the day! It’s up to Miss Fox and her new wellness regimen to help them eat better, exercise, and get more sleep! Kids will learn ways to stay healthy and bring fitness into their everyday lives.
Want to see books about health and daily living?
Baby Animals Day and Night - Sleepy babies and wide-awake babies day and night. A companion to Pyllis Limbacher Tildes’s Baby Animals Black and White and Baby Animals Spots and Stripes, Baby Animals Day and Night introduces diurnal and nocturnal animals in pretty black and white images, perfect for developing eyes. Sweet and simple, introducing the love of books to even the very youngest babies is fun and easy with this adorable board book.
Bears in a Band - CLANG! CLANG! TOOTLEY-TOOO! The impossibly cute bears are back — and this time they have musical instruments at the ready. The little bears pick up their instruments and play a noisy song. They don’t care if the notes are wrong! But uh-oh, Big Brown Bear is fast asleep. Will their lively music wake him up? A small moment of trepidation segues into a jubilant performance in a story that will be sweet music to little ears.
Want to see books about baby animals?
Good Night, Baby Bear - As winter approaches, Mother Bear must bring a snack, a drink, and finally the moon to her cub before he can go to sleep in a cave.
While Grandpa Naps - A moving, funny, elegant meditation on love, childhood, and one’s place in a family. Gilbert spends a sunny summer afternoon obediently keeping watch over his napping grandpa to shoo the pesky flies away. Unsure of exactly how long he’s really supposed to sit there, watching for non-existent bugs, he passes time contemplating his ever-changing family: His grandma Sarah recently died, a new baby is on the way, his siblings and cousins race in and out. While the temptations to abandon his post beckon, Gilbert’s loyalty to his grandpa stays true, and his quiet dedication finds a sweet reward.
The Dreamway - New York Times bestselling author Lisa Papademetriou delivers her most fantastical, emotional story yet in this tale of a young girl’s journey into her dreams to save her brother from the darkness that surrounds him. Perfect for fans of A Wrinkle in Time, The Phantom Tollbooth, and Echo. Every night, your sleeping body stays in your bed, while the you of you travels deep beneath the earth to ride the complex rails of the Dreamway…. Stella Clay thought it was just another ordinary day at her drab gray school. Then her twin brother, Cole, is attacked by a shadowy creature on their way home, and Stella’s world turns positively peculiar. Suddenly, her brother seems different, almost dimmer, like a candle about to flicker out. And then a talking mouse shows up in her bedroom. Stella discovers that the real Cole has been taken prisoner in the Dreamway. Determined to find him, she sets out with the “help” of a stuck-up rodent, a nervous dragonfly, and a mysterious pirate, and finds her way to the darkest edge of the Dreamway to bring her brother home…before he’s trapped forever. In this allegorical exploration of childhood depression, with a moving author note that follows, Lisa Papademetriou gently and safely illustrates for her readers the emotional effects of anger, anxiety, and insecurity—and illuminates a pathway to hope and recovery.
Snuggle Down Deep - Follow along as animal families snuggle down deep for the wintertime in this rhythmic and charming picture book perfect for little ones while they snuggle down for hibernation. It’s wintertime, a quiet time, no creatures left in sight. They’re dreaming, snoozing, snoring through each morning, noon, and night…. As winter arrives and fluffly snowflakes begin to fall, animal families gather together to snuggle down deep against the cold. They prepare and cozy up their dens, nests, and underground tunnels. Then they curl up nose to nose, cheek to cheek, snuggle down deep, and sleep.
The Night Knights - Nighttime can be scary. Every bump, thump, or scratch could be a monster lurking under the bed or in a closet. But if that’s the case, then why haven’t we ever seen a monster? You might think that’s because monsters don’t exist. But maybe monsters do exist . . . but so do something else: The Night Knights. And when night falls, they take their place, protecting us all from the terrors lurking in the dark. With a lyrical text reminiscent of the bestseller Dream Animals, The Night Knights introduces reluctant sleepers to the many fantastical warriors who will protect them while they slumber, from the Guardians of the Gates to the Midnight Flock.
Katie's Spooky Sleepover - Katie’s friends have come for a sleepover, and telling a scary story seems like a good idea—until she has a dream about a monster under her bed, and she wakes up to find her lucky kimono missing.
The Night Monster - Every night, when the owl hoots and the shadows of the trees dance on the walls, the Night Monster creeps into Avi’s room and frightens him. One day, his sister suggests he write a letter to the monster, and Avi’s nights are not the same any more.
One Little Monster - In graphic artist and designer Mark Gonyea’s clever counting book, a little boy snuggles in for a nap, but much to his surprise, silly little monsters pop up wherever he looks. First there’s one at the window, then two appear when he blinks, and three pop out when one of the monsters sneezes. Before he knows it, there are ten kooky creatures in his room. But will the little boy find a way to outsmart those pesky pests?
Want to see books about monsters?
My Bed: Enchanting Ways to Fall Asleep Around the World - Delightful rhymes and charming hand-stitched art celebrate the many ways we sleep across the world. Perfect for a baby shower gift and for fans of This Is How We Do It.
My bed rocks on water
My bed sways in the breeze.
My bed’s beneath a curtain
My bed’s aloft in trees . . . In the Netherlands, some beds rock on water. In Brazil they might sway in the breeze. From Canada to Japan, Afghanistan to Norway, sleep has taken many forms and shapes throughout history. Astonishing, hand-stitched illustrations and a delightful narrative tell the story of sleeping traditions across the world.
Dinosnores - Ah, all those dinosaurs look so cute in their pajamas. See them yawn and stretch and brush their teeth. Soon they’ll be sound asleep, and . . . OH NO! SNORING!!! (“Honk-SHOOOOOO! Honk-SHOOOOOO! . . .”) Little kids love big dinosaurs. They also love the sublime silliness of Sandra Boynton books. So what better way to wind down at the end of the day than with DINOSNORES, a rhyming and rhythmic ritual of getting ready for bed—ruined by a pile of loudly snoozing dinos. Happily, the book concludes: “Thank goodness those dinosnores live far, far away.”
Goodnight Songs - “Baby sail the seven seas Safely in my arms When the waves go up and down You are safe from harm.” Now this New York Times bestselling collection of charming lullabies by Margaret Wise Brown (Goodnight Moon) comes in an adorable board edition—still gorgeously illustrated by 12 award-winning artists. The roster of celebrated names includes Carin Berger, whose The Little Yellow Leaf was a New York Times Best Illustrated Children’s Book; Eric Puybaret, who brought the bestselling Puff, the Magic Dragon to life on the pa≥ Coretta Scott King Honor Award winner Sean Qualls; and Caldecott Honor medalist Melissa Sweet. It’s the perfect gift to wish children a sweet goodnight. The illustrators are: Jonathan Bean Carin Berger Sophie Blackall Linda Bleck Renata Liwska Christopher Silas Neal Zachariah OHora Eric Puybaret Sean Qualls Isabel Roxas Melissa Sweet * Dan Yaccarino
Little Penguin Stays Awake - A charming companion to Little Penguin Gets the Hiccups and Little Penguin and the Lollipop, Little Penguin Stays Awake is a funny bedtime tale that invites the reader to jump in and play along. Little Penguin has one wish—he wants to fly just like all the other birds! All he has to do is wish on a shooting star, but penguins have VERY EARLY BEDTIMES! Little Penguin has tried everything he can to stay up extra late—but it’s not working. Can YOU help him stay awake?
So Many Bunnies - Old Mother Rabbit lived in a shoe. She had twenty-six children and knew what to do. From Abel, who sleeps on a table, to Zed who sleeps on the shed, help Mother Rabbit tuck a whole alphabet of adorable little bunnies in for the night.
Seriously, Just Go to Sleep - A parent pleads with their reluctant child to fall asleep, describing all of the different animals who have fallen asleep already.
At the Stroke of Goodnight - Reminiscent of Susan Marie Swanson’s The House in the Night, world-renowned paper-cut artist Clay Rice weaves a poetic scene of what happens around a small farmhouse as night falls. A dreaming dog. A purring cat. A bird on a limb. A mouse on a mat. The evening glows in the twilight. And all falls quiet on the stroke of goodnight. A baby coos; a mommy sighs. Little ones tucked in, with dreams in their eyes. A gentle hand turns out the light. And all is quiet on the stroke of goodnight. A perfect bedtime story that gently and beautifully depicts a busy world settling in for a warm night’s sleep.
Spot Loves Bedtime - Snuggle up and get ready for bed with your favorite puppy, Spot! Spot is ready to get into bed and go to sleep, but he can’t find his teddy bear! This simple, reassuring story is perfect for sharing at bedtime.