The best picture books about sleepovers

Why am I passionate about this?

One of my favorite childhood memories is of kindergarten painting time. The teacher let us use thick tempera paint on big sheets of paper and actual easels! My abstract paintings have been in the Whitney Museum of American Art. But for the last 17 years, I’ve been painting for preschoolers and kindergarteners. My own stories are often inspired by my children and tend to be about leaving the comfort of home for the first time. I’m the author and illustrator of Darcy's First Sleepover, Pearl Goes to Preschool, The Artist and the King, and Lily’s Cat Mask which received a Kirkus starred review and was added to Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library. My next book, Grandpa and Jake, will be out in March of 2022.


I wrote...

Darcy's First Sleepover

By Julie Fortenberry,

Book cover of Darcy's First Sleepover

What is my book about?

Description from the publisher: Every night at home, Darcy brushes her teeth with strawberry toothpaste; she snuggles in bed with Little Cat, and she falls asleep to the sound of her dad washing the dishes. But tonight, Darcy is having her very first sleepover! Even though it’s at her cousin Kayla’s house, it still feels a little daunting. Kayla has peppermint toothpaste, a baby bear named Charlotte, and howling winds outside her window. Darcy misses her dad and her own cozy bedroom. Should she ask her aunt to take her home?

This rewarding tale celebrates the excitement of new experiences and the power of quiet growth. Backmatter also included shedding light on steps parents can take when helping kids prepare for their first sleepover!

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The books I picked & why

Book cover of Crystal Is My Friend

Julie Fortenberry Why did I love this book?

What are the compromises you make when your best friend sleeps over? As the host, must you let your friend decide everything you do? This is a realistic story about friendship. Kids will understand the feelings that Susan has as she reluctantly lets her friend, Crystal, call the shots. It’s a lively story with fun, loose illustrations by Edward Frascino.

By Shirley Gordon, Edward Frascino,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Crystal Is My Friend as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When Susan invites Crystal to spend the night, both learn the meaning of friendship.


Book cover of Ira Sleeps Over

Julie Fortenberry Why did I love this book?

A lighthearted take on the embarrassment a child feels when they want to bring their comfort stuffed animal to a sleepover. There’s a taunting older sibling, and a happy ending, of course, when Ira discovers that his friend has a favorite stuffed animal too. Bernard Warber combines recognizable and universal emotion with humor.

By Bernard Waber,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Ira Sleeps Over as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 2, 3, 4, and 5.

What is this book about?

From the beloved author-illustrator of Lyle, Lyle Crocodile comes a charming and relatable picture book about a child's first sleepover experience.

Ira is thrilled about his first sleepover at his friend Reggie's house, until his sister makes him question taking his favorite teddy bear! Will Reggie laugh at his teddy bear? Can Ira sleep without it? A hilarious back-and-forth ensues in this classic picture book about staying true to yourself. A perfect read-aloud for every young reader with their own bedtime friends.


Book cover of Sleepover with Beatrice and Bear

Julie Fortenberry Why did I love this book?

Beatrice and Bear are two very different animals who, despite those differences, play together all summer and fall. When winter comes and it’s time for Bear to hibernate, Beatrice, a bunny, wants to hibernate too. Of course, she’s way too active to sleep all winter. How can she share her winter with Bear? By making a scrapbook with pictures of all the things she does while he’s sleeping! When Bear wakes, she shares her winter adventures with him. Beatrice’s scrapbook “was the perfect gift to read together again and again.” Charming illustrations, and an endearing tale about enduring friendship.

By Mônica Carnesi,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Sleepover with Beatrice and Bear as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 3, 4, and 5.

What is this book about?

This delightful story of an irrepressible bunny will engage readers on many levels as it celebrates creativity, making the best of circumstances, and the joy of the changing seasons.
 
How can two friends share winter when one of them is hibernating? Beatrice and Bear meet one spring day and become best buddies. They play together through summer and fall. Then winter comes and Beatrice can’t find Bear anywhere. She hears he’s gone to hibernate—but where on earth is that? When Beatrice learns that hibernation is not a place and that Bear will be sleeping all winter long, she fears it…


Book cover of Froggy's Sleepover

Julie Fortenberry Why did I love this book?

First off, I love Jonathan London’s illustration style. Froggy is a goofy, energetic animal character with his own series. In this story, he’s fired up and packing for a sleepover at Max’s house. But bedtime is different at Max’s, where Froggy’s comfy routine is upended. When Max starts telling ghost stories, Froggy wants to go home. And so, they decide to sleep over at Froggy’s instead. Then it’s Max who feels out of place and wants to go home. So, it’s back to Max’s. Then back and forth between houses until morning, when, finally, they fall asleep at Max’s. Sometimes it’s uncomfortable to be away from home--a common feeling told with humor.

By Jonathan London, Frank Remkiewicz (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Froggy's Sleepover as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 3, 4, and 5.

What is this book about?

Froggy is sleeping over at Max’s house for the first time! He packs his sleeping bag, his pillow, his pajamas, and even his toothbrush. Now, he’s ready to flop flop flop off to Max’s house. But then Froggy decides it would be a good idea to go back to his own house. So off they go—shloop! Then Max gets a tummy ache and wants to go back to his own house. So off they go—shloop! Back and forth they go between the two houses. Froggy’s Sleepover is sure to dissolve any sleepover worries into giggles as Froggy and Max delight…


Book cover of Thank You and Good Night

Julie Fortenberry Why did I love this book?

This is a lullaby of a book. Cozy all the way through. Three adorable animal friends spend the night together playing, doing yoga and the chicken dance, watching a shooting star, and, before drifting to sleep, giving thanks for the many things they are grateful for. The comforting sounds of the words are reminiscent of Goodnight Moon. The illustrations are graceful and simple. Patrick McDonnell is peerless.

By Patrick McDonnell,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Thank You and Good Night as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 2, 3, 4, and 5.

What is this book about?

The sun set, the moon rose, and Clement buttons his favourite pyjamas, ready for bed. But then his friends arrive for a surprise pyjama party! Together they play, snack and practice yoga before wishing on a shooting star and finally getting tucked into bed. But not before saying thank you for all of the wonderful and simple joys they've shared.

Inspired by the internationally acclaimed MUTTS series, this warm and engaging picture book is perfect for sharing at bedtime.

Introducing bestselling author and cartoonist Patrick McDonnell to the UK for the first time.


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Beautiful and Terrible Things

By S. M. Stevens,

Book cover of Beautiful and Terrible Things

S. M. Stevens

New book alert!

What is my book about?

Charley Byrne isn’t really living. She hunkers down in her apartment above the bookstore she manages, until quirky activist Xander Wallace lures her out of social exile with the prospect of friendship and romance. Charley joins Xander’s circle of diverse friends and thrives, even leaving her comfort zone to join protests in a city struggling with social justice ills.

But the new friendships bring back-to-back betrayals that threaten the bookstore—Charley’s haven—and propel her into a dangerous depression, in a stark reminder that friendship has the power to destroy as well as save lives. Can her friends save the store? And Charley?

Beautiful and Terrible Things

By S. M. Stevens,

What is this book about?

"A beautifully crafted story of friendship and self-discovery set amidst the harsh realities of today's world. Superb!" -Eileen O'Finlan, author of Erin's Children

Charley Byrne isn't really living. At age 29, she hunkers down in her apartment above the bookstore she manages, afraid of a 7-year curse. Then quirky activist Xander Wallace lures her out of social exile with the prospect of friendship and romance. Charley joins Xander's circle of friends diverse in their heritage, race, gender and sexual orientation. She thrives, even leaving her comfort zone to join protests in a city struggling with social justice ills.

But the…


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Interested in sleepovers, friendships, and the United Kingdom?

10,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about sleepovers, friendships, and the United Kingdom.

Sleepovers Explore 7 books about sleepovers
Friendships Explore 1,387 books about friendships
The United Kingdom Explore 564 books about the United Kingdom