Book of the Month: The ‘In the Night Garden’ Bedtime Book

A brilliant bedtime book by Mandy Gurney, founder of Millpond Sleep Clinic.

Aimed at the under-2s, In the Night Garden is one of CBeebies crowning achievements, transfixing young children for a good half and hour before bath and bed and giving parents a precious breather before the final push towards the end of the day. It has been something of a lifesaver in our household.

And now we have this brilliant book version. Featuring all your little one’s favourite In the Night Garden characters, The Bedtime Book: Helping your child to drift off to sleep has been written by Mandy Gurney, sleep consultant and founder of the Millpond Sleep Clinic, with the specific intention goal of preparing your child for sleep.

A stunningly soporific story to be read to your child last thing before bedtime

The book opens with a practical and focused bedtime routine to be carried out every night with your child and follows with a stunningly soporific story to be read last thing before bedtime. Rhythmic, repetitive, and full of suggestive words such as ‘tired’, ‘goodnight’, ‘sleepy’ and ‘night-night’, I trialled this with my own 2 year old daughter and very nearly fell asleep myself.

The basic crux of the story is that Igglepiggle is very tired and has lost his sleepy boat. He goes looking for it in the night garden and finds lots of other characters that are also very sleepy, just like him, and all going to bed. Everyone is all snuggly and warm and sleepy and, of course, Igglepiggle eventually finds his sleepy boat. Many repeated phrases and lullaby-like paragraphs later, your child, too, is calm, snoozy and ready for bed. It’s a real winner, but, be warned, don’t read this if you’re feeling a bit kippy yourself. Er, mummy? Zzzzzzzzz.

The Bedtime Book: Helping your child drift off to sleep by Mandy Gurney. Penguin 2016. £7.99. Available from


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