Top 10 Best Bedtime Stories for Children

These gentle, heart-warming stories are sure to help little ones drift off into peaceful slumber. See below for the best bedtime stories for children, featuring classic and contemporary tales by beloved storytellers such as Beatrix Potter and Julia Donaldson.

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1. The Gruffalo

  • £3.99

Julia Donaldson & Axel Scheffler

Featuring the famous half-grizzly bear, half-buffalo, this tale follows a brave little mouse, who believes the Gruffalo is nothing but fantasy - until he comes face-to-face with him! Complete with distinctive illustrations by Axel Scheffler, this story is guaranteed to delight little ones at bedtime and be remembered forever. 

2. Five Minutes' Peace

  • £6.99

Jill Murphy

This much-loved story is great for sharing with children at bedtime to help them settle down ready for sleep. It tells the tale of the Large family, a family of elephants. Mrs Large just wants a little time to herself, but her excitable children have other ideas! Can she get just five minutes' peace?!


3. Goodnight Moon

  • £3.99

Margaret Wise Brown

Published in 1947, this classic bedtime story continues to soothe children and prepare them for sleep. Join a sleep-resistant little bunny as he says goodnight to all the objects in his room. This story gently signals to little ones that it's time for sleep, and they can say goodnight to all the objects in their own rooms, knowing that the world has gone to sleep and they're not missing anything!


4. Time Now to Dream

  • £3.99

Timothy Knapman

This gorgeous picture book will reassure anxious children that not everything new is scary. When siblings Jack and Alice hear a strange noise in the woods, Jack is afraid, certain it must be the Wicked Wolf with big, bad claws and snap-trap jaws. Alice, however, can barely hide her excitement, and goes with Jack into the heart of the forest. They'll soon discover what was making that sound... was it really a wolf?


5. Tales from Acorn Wood

  • £4.99

Julia Donaldson & Axel Scheffler

From the dream team behind The Gruffalo, the Tales of Acorn Wood stories are cherished favourites with little ones. This large-format book contains three of the most popular stories: Postman Bear, Hide-and-Seek Pig and Rabbit's Nap. Plus, there are fun flaps to lift alongside the wonderful rhyming text.


6. The Darkest Dark

  • £4.99

Chris Hadfield

Popular astronaut Chris Hadfield tells an uplifting story about a little boy who dreams of flying into space, despite a dreadful fear of the dark! His name? Chris! Young Chris knows that when bedtime arrives, the worst sort of alien appears... darkness! But when he watches the first televised moon landing, he realises that the dark isn't scary at all, because even where the darkest dark is, out there in space, it's actually very exciting! With gorgeous artwork and an otherworldly feel, this book will enchant little ones at bedtime.


7. Beep, Beep, Beep, Time for Sleep!

  • £3.99

Claire Freedman

Young fans of diggers and big machines will love this machine-themed book. With bright, bold illustrations and a sleepy story, this picture book follows some tired machines as they power down after a busy day on the building site and dim their lights for the night. Featuring a pull-out scene in the centre pages, this charming, rhyming story is sure to help little ones settle down, and shows them that even machines need sleep!


8. The Tale of Peter Rabbit

  • £2.99

Beatrix Potter

Mischievous little Peter Rabbit decides to venture into Mr McGregor's vegetable garden to munch on some carrots - and narrowly escapes a frightening fate! Peter Rabbit has been the nation's most beloved little bunny since 1902, making this the perfect story to read at bedtime.


9. Peep Inside: Beauty and the Beast

  • £4.99


This mesmerising book features die-cut artwork, laser-cut holes, flaps, cutaways and lots of sumptuous illustrations. When Belle's father stumbles upon the Beast's castle, he is taken prisoner, and Belle must rush to the rescue. She agrees to take her father's place, but once she gets to know the Beast, she sees beyond his rough, tough exterior, and helps him unearth his human side once more. This beautiful book is sure to captivate little ones.


10. The Snail and the Whale

  • £3.99

Julia Donaldson & Axel Scheffler

This story follows a courageous little sea snail who - despite the other snails' qualms - wants to explore the world! She hitches a ride on the back of an enormous whale, and the pair set off on an incredible journey, past icebergs, volcanoes and golden beaches. But suddenly, the whale finds itself beached in a bay! Can the tiny snail save him? This exciting and gorgeously-illustrated story is full of fun and friendship, perfect for bedtime.