12 Wonderful Diversity Going to Bed Books & GIVEAWAY!

12 Wonderful Diversity Going to Bed Books & GIVEAWAY!

Please welcome author Carol Gordon Ekster today! She’s no stranger to bedtime stories, having written a few of her own. She shares her list of favorite diversity bedtime books and we are giving away a copy of her newest book, You Know What? Please use the Rafflecopter at the bottom to enter.

You Know What? by Carol Gordon Ekster, illustrated by Nynke Talsma 

Oliver should go to sleep. But there is so much he wants to tell his mother about: what happened that day at school, the things he read in books, everything he sees around him.
A touching and familiar picture book about (postponing) the ritual of going to sleep. [picture book, ages 4 and up]

Diversity Going to Bed Books

Lala Salama: A Tanzanian Lullaby by Patricia MacLachlan, illustrated by Elizabeth Zunon

This is a lovely lyrical and poetic read aloud. Beautiful language and soft gorgeous illustrations showing an African family’s love, make this a wonderful bedtime book to choose. [picture book, for ages 3 and up]

Flashlight Night by Matt Forrest Esenwine, illustrated by Fred Koehler

A lyrical poem uses a flashlight to shed light on the magic and wonder three children experience, one child being African American. At the end we see the children reading classics under a cover with a flashlight and understand that the books offered the adventures highlighted with gorgeous detail by the amazing artist, Fred Koehler. [picture book, for ages4 and up]

Imani’s Moon by JaNay Brown-Wood, illustrated by Hazel Mitchell

While this is not the typical bedtime story, it has dreams and sleeping, and lovely writing with beautiful illustrations with strong colors. I love that it teaches children to believe in themselves and not give into allowing others to make you feel badly. This takes place in Africa, showing another culture and meeting the needs for diverse books. [picture book, for ages 4 and up]

A Different Pond by Bao Phi, illustrated by Thi Bui

A sweet story of a Vietnamese family trying to make it in America. Lovely language sprinkled thoughout, ending with the boy sleeping as he dreams of “fish in faraway ponds”.   A little history, a little culture…perfect for kids as an alternative bedtime book. [picture book, for ages 4 and up]

Please, Baby, Please by Spike Lee & Tonya Lewis Lee, illustrated by Kadir Nelson

Sweet rhythmic bedtime read with wonderful repetition that will be enjoyed by the very young. Absolutely adorable illustrations. [picture book, for ages 6 months and up]

Ten, Nine, Eight by Molly Bang

Lovely bedtime story with language that makes a sweet read aloud for the youngest readers with a simple countdown to “1 big girl all ready for bed”. [picture book, ages 4 and up]


Hush! A Thai Lullaby by Minfong Ho, illustrated by Holly Meade

Rhyming and comforting fun read aloud with a repeating pattern. Lovely full color illustrations. [picture book, for ages 2 and up]

Northwoods Cradle Song: From a Menominee Lullaby by Douglas Wood, illustrated by Lisa Desimini

This lullaby is a beautiful way to introduce a poetic bedtime story to young readers. And I love the focus on the wonder of nature as well as the repeated stanza, “Sleep, little warrior, sleep. Go to sleep. Go to sleep.” Lovely deep color illustrations. [picture book, ages 2 and up]

My Nana and Me by Irene Smalls, illustrated by Cathy Ann Johnson

Poetic and lovely read aloud featuring a beautiful relationship between a black American granddaughter and grandmother . It ends with the child sleeping, so it’s a perfect bedtime book that any grandparent will love sharing. Love the gold tones of the full color warm illustrations. [picture book, ages 2 and up]

On Mother’s Lap by Ann Herbert Scott, illustrated by Glo Coalson

A comforting book with an Eskimo boy who sees that on his mother’s lap there is enough room for him, his dog, his toys, and even his little sister. Love the repetition of the line, “Back and forth, back and forth, they rocked.” Illustrations in soft tones are full of emotion.  [picture book, ages 2 and up]

Baya, Baya, Lulla-by-a by Megan McDonald, illustrated by Vera Rosenberry

Indian lullaby told in a poetic musical story with lots of onomatopoeia and beautiful artwork. It even has interesting back matter about the baya bird and their nests that appear in this story. [picture book, for ages 3 and up]

Grandmother’s Dreamcatcher by Becky Ray McCain, illustrated by Stacey Schuett

This longer picture book is for the older crowd. It’s a story of a Chippewa grandmother babysitting her granddaughter for a week and making a dreamcatcher to help with bad dreams. Lovely warm-toned full color illustrations, with strong writing. [picture book, for ages 4 and up]

You Know What? Picture Book GIVEAWAY!

We are giving away a copy of Carol Gordon Ekster’s newest book, You Know What? It’s a bedtime picture book about procrastination. Please fill out the Rafflecopter below to enter. I can only mail to U.S. addresses due to the high cost of shipping.

Carol Gordon Ekster

Carol Gordon Ekster taught elementary school teacher for 35 years.  Her first published book, Where Am I Sleeping Tonight?-A Story of Divorce, Boulden Publishing, 2008, was an About.com Readers’ Choice 2012 finalist for Best Children’s Book for Single Parents. A picture book, Ruth The Sleuth and The Messy Room, was on Character Publishing’s debut list, 2011 and was awarded the Children’s Literary Classics Seal of Approval.  

Her picture book, Before I Sleep: I Say Thank You, Pauline Books and Media, released January 1, 2015 and is now in its third printing. The book was the 3rd place winner in the Catholic Press Association’s 2016 Book Awards in the children’s category and was a finalist for the ACP Excellence in Publishing Awards 2016.

Her new book, You Know What? with Clavis Books came out first in Dutch, December 2016, and the English version released September 1, 2017. Korean and Chinese versions are in the works. Carol spends time in critique groups, doing exercise and yoga, and working on her books. She is grateful that her writing gives her another way to communicate with children.

Find her on Twitter @cekster and at www.carolgordonekster.com

a Rafflecopter giveaway

To examine any book more closely at Amazon, please click on image of book.

12 Wonderful Diversity Going to Bed Books & GIVEAWAY!

I am an Amazon affiliate which means if you buy anything through my blog, I get a very small kickback at no cost to you. I use this money to pay for postage and handling for my giveaways.

By Mia Wenjen, PragmaticMom


  1. John Smith

    “What are your favorite bedtime books to read to your kids?” “Charlotte’s Web” may end rather sadly, but before that there are laughs which make it great to read together.

  2. SJ

    Thank you for your generosity! Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

  3. Goodnight Moon, and any Narnia book.
    Jen Dieleman recently posted…There Was No Snow on Christmas Eve By Pamela Munoz RyanMy Profile

  4. Ali

    These look like wonderful bedtime books. Our favorite bedtime stories usually involve trucks, but we are always looking for new suggestions!

  5. Ali, thanks for stopping by to comment. It is very important to expose our little ones to a wide variety of books in order to enrich their language and show them the habit and practice of reading and share the art of illustration. Picture books pack so much value in a small package!

  6. Beth T.

    I loved reading “A Wrinkle In Time” with my niece Anna.

  7. Haley C

    I like the witty cute ones, like This is not my hat and Pete the cat.

  8. Wonderful collection of picture books!

  9. Bianca Munoz

    Llama Llama red pajama! Love You Forever. Any classic 🙂

  10. Carolsue

    I like reading The Hungry Caterpillar

  11. Anel

    We love reading The children’s Bible stories, Goodnight Moon, and Daddy Hugs.

  12. What an awesome list! I even learned about a couple of books that are new to me.

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