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Can This Book Help Get Your Kids to Sleep Faster?

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By Anisa Arsenault, Associate Editor
Updated March 2, 2017
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Image: Kate Daigneault

Bedtime just got an instruction manual. And it’s cleverly disguised as a children’s book.

The Rabbit Who Wants to Fall Asleep is a new best-seller on Amazon. Swedish author and psychologist Carl-Johan Forssen Ehrlin, who self-published the book, instructs parents how to read it based on the styling of the text. Bold means emphasize the word or sentence. Italics means read the text in a slow or calm voice.

Over the course of the 26 pages, parents are instructed to yawn and encourage kids to yawn with them. Repeating the child’s name throughout the story is also intended to induce drowsiness.

"Some of it is helping the child to focus on the goal, which is to relax and go to sleep,’’ Ehrlin tells  TODAY. “It’s mostly about creating a habit. Children are different. Some just want to listen one time to the story and then they fall asleep. Some others want to hear it a few evenings in a row.”

The Amazon reviews are a testament to the story’s success:

“It took almost the whole book, but mine were out — and the one that never falls asleep first (whose name I was using throughout) was sleeping first,” writes one user. “I downloaded the book while they were running up and down the hallway, 20 minutes later I typed this review.”

“We’ve read countless other stories over the past year to try to get them on the same page with a wind down feeling, but nothing has worked except this book,” raves another parent. “There are other nighttime books out there, but for our toddler, they all promote his imagination and curiosity about the colors and then he is asking a ton of questions. Rather than calming him down, he is just spending his time pointing and laughing. When my wife or I read this book, he will look at the pages, but you can just sense a feeling of calm in the room. Our one year old is the same exact way, and it’s absolutely amazing how much this has helped us in getting our children to sleep.”

What do you think? Will you be adding this story to your bed time routine?

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