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That's Good! That's Bad!
Margery Cuyler
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That's Good! That's Bad! (That's Good! That's Bad!)

3.83  ·  Rating Details ·  372 Ratings  ·  60 Reviews
A little boy has a series of adventures and misadventures with a bunch of wild animals.
Published October 15th 1993 by Turtleback Books (first published October 1st 1991)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Jan 19, 2009 Angie rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: picture-books
This book is actually scary to kids. The pictures are too over the top. The animals look evil. And the idea of that's good, that's bad -just doesn't help the story.
Dec 01, 2016 Betty rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Best read aloud!! ❤ ...more
A little confusing with all the "that's good, wait, no that's bad, wait...." Still fun, including the illustrations.
Caitlyn LeBeau
That's Good! That's Bad! by Margery Cuyler and illustrated by David Catrow is about a boy who goes to the zoo with his parents and gets into trouble. The story begins when his parents buy him a red balloon and when he grabs ahold of it, it lifts him up into the air and carries him toward the animals cages. The balloon pops and drops the boy into a muddy pit of hippopotamus. He climbs out of the river and baboons chase him up a tree. The boy grabs onto what he thinks is a vine to swing away from ...more
Concetta Kellough
The kids love this book because things that seem good are bad, and things that seem bad are good.
Apr 15, 2008 Malbadeen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: moral relativists and dying people
this book gets 5 stars, just because it comes to mind A LOT. The story is basically a series of events that seem either good or bad at first and then turn into the opposite:
something happens, "That's good" no "that's bad".
something else happens, "that's bad" no "that's good".
whenever something happens to me, this text comes to mind.
For example, when i woke up at 4:30 this morning (thinking it was 5:30) my initial thought was "that's bad" then I realized that gave me enough time to make bread and
Sep 02, 2016 Julia rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children, classics, book
This is one of those books that you can read only once and it will continue to stay with you long after the years have passed by since you closed it. As the description of the book states this is one that shows how bad things can turn out to be good or even on how good things can turn out to be bad in this always-changing world that we are living in.

The writing is simple and easy while the formatting is large enough that you aren't having to squint. Since of the descriptive words and the commo
Oct 05, 2012 Sarah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really really enjoyed looking at all the illustrations in this book, they were great!! I also liked how descriptive the words were that the author used in this book. I would recommend this book to 2nd or 3rd graders.

From Publishers Weekly
At the zoo a boy is lifted into the sky by his balloon. "Oh, that's good. No, that's bad! "--because the balloon pops when it hits a tree deep in the jungle. "Oh, that's bad. No, that's good! "--because the wide-eyed lad falls into a river and climbs onto a hi
Sydney Freel
Dec 06, 2014 Sydney Freel rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 307-books
This book is about a boy who goes to the zoo, and his balloon carries him away to other adventures. The balloon carries him into the sky until it hits a tree and pops, and he falls into a river deep in the jungle. He climbs onto a hippos back and gets to shore. He gets chased up a tree by baboons, mistakes a snake for a vine, gets pulled out of quicksand by an elephant, and flown back to the zoo by a stork. Good use of precise language but lacked other style and language elements. The focus of t ...more
Noelle Marie
Dec 02, 2013 Noelle Marie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children-s-books
In this story a young boy goes to the zoo where his parents buy him a big red balloon. Immediately the balloon lifts the boy into the sky. "Oh that's good! No, that's bad!" Then the balloon carried him deep into the jungle where it popped on a prickly branch. "Oh that's bad! No, that's bad!"

That's Good! That's Bad! Is a story of a series of events that at first seem either good or bad and then turn out to be the opposite. For this reason, this book could be a great tool in the classroom for gett
Dec 02, 2013 Rilee rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Julia Jasztal
Mommy's review from 11/28/11 -

I have never in my life heard a creepier voice than the man who reads for the audio version of this book. Oh. My. God. All I could think of while listening was that he sounds like a pervy pedophile. Ugh.

"Nooooooo kidssssss, that'sssssss baaaaaaaddddddd."
Noooooooooooooo, that'ssssssssss gooooooooooodddddd."

Ick. I shudder to recall his voice. Whoever lined that up - major FAIL.
Honestly, the story may be decent but I couldn't concentrate at all so I don't really know.
S.A. Bergen
Oct 04, 2014 S.A. Bergen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was one of my son's favourite books when he was little. He heard it read on a children's storybook program, can't think of the name of it now, but if I recall it was read by Maya Angelou. It's a wonderful story. When I would say "That's good." my son would say "No, that's bad!" Makes me smile just thinking about it. I still have the book, in my son's keepsake box. My son, Aaron, is now 21 and in the Canadian Military but whenever he peeks into his keepsake box this book is one of the things ...more
May 19, 2009 Stephanie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, childrens
That's Good! That's Bad! tells the tale of a little boy's trip to the zoo with his Dad and Mom. However, due to an unfortunate (or fortunate) series of events he gets separated from his parents and goes on a little journey through the jungle. As he encounters the different animals, what a child might think is a bad thing ... such as accidentally grabbing a giant vine only to find out that it was a long snake ... turns out to be good, not bad. I found out that there are sequels to this book: That ...more
I think this book is about humility. Every time it seems like something in the book is good it turns out to be bad and every time it seems like something is bad it turns out to be good. Basically, I think it is a reminder that it's tricky to apply moral judgement to any situation because you just never know how things are going to end up. The pictures are larger than life with the characters almost looking like fun-house mirror versions of themselves. But I think they are a good fit with the wac ...more
Traci Bold
Aug 25, 2015 Traci Bold rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the first picture book of it's kind that keeps the reader in suspense with each page turn. Not at all what I foresaw which is the coolest part of this book. The readers and the listeners will have fun with this book.

The narrator and the reader/listener interact throughout the whole book to show the story as it unfolds. What the reader anticipates from the vibrant illustrations may or may not be good. The reader has to turn the page to see what is in store for the little boy.

I found this
Sep 04, 2009 Angie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: picture
Use this one quite often to talk about behavior in the library. This is the story of a little boy who gets a big red balloon that takes him on adventures. Some of the things that happen are good, and some are not. It can be hard to decide.

Then we talk about things that are good and bad in the library. Lends itself to the next week when we read Eric Kimmel's I Took my Frog to the Library, because then we talk about animal behavior and why some of it is good or bad for the library.

Did I just say I
Julie Gerrish
Dec 01, 2013 Julie Gerrish rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is fabulous. It has very descriptive and colorful pictures, and uses lots of onomatopoeia to convey the actions and sounds that are happening. The boy in the story goes on an exciting journey through the jungle and as he goes from adventure to adventure, the book narrates, "That's good! No, that's bad!" and vice-versa. I really enjoyed it, and I would keep it in my classroom for grades pre-k through 3rd.
I actually really enjoyed the illustrations in this book. Most of them were quite humorous and imaginative. While the repeated lines in this story got a little old, I still thought it was interesting to see what situation the boy would wind up in next. I would probably recommend.

*Taken from my book reviews blog:
Oct 07, 2013 Megan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book puts a different spin on what the children would normally think. Anytime something in the book happens, that you would normally think is good, they say that it is bad and they explain why. And when something in the book happens, that you would think was bad, it says that it is good and then lets you know why. It is not the greatest book, but it is interactive and gives kids a different way of looking at situations.
Megan Coloutti
Apr 19, 2010 Megan Coloutti rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A little boy has a series of adventures and misadventures with a bunch of wild animals. How can something that is good, be bad…and something that is bad, be good? Inspired by the pattern and concept in Margery Cuyler’s picture book That’s Good! That’s Bad!, students will brainstorm a sequence of related events as the story moves from good to bad and back again. Students are challenged to be original with their ideas within this safe structure.
Feb 18, 2011 Kelly rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Love this book! It was an inspiration to me in 4th grade when I wrote a similar book - called "Fortunately! Unfortunately!" It's cool how what's good on one page then leads to a bad thing on the next page or vice versa. David Catrow's illustrations of the animals are outstanding - so detailed and bold and fun. I've never been a big fan of his drawings of people, but they weren't too bad in this book. I also liked the back and forth, switching of good, bad.
Brenda Cregor
Mar 30, 2012 Brenda Cregor rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is a nice read-aloud before discussing CAUSE AND EFFECT with students. I've even used it in the upper grade levels.
The illustrations can help students SEE what Causes the Effect.
Little children, just love all the crazy experiences the child-character has in such a short amount of time.
Dec 03, 2007 Shanna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Grades 1-4
Shelves: picture-books, final
That's Good! That's Bad! takes a boy through different scenarios that have good and bad in the mix. I loved the way this book connected scenarios and brought it all right back to the beginning. I think this would be a good read-aloud for younger readers and would be a great example for a writing assignment for older readers.
Jun 12, 2008 Sara rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Sara by: Nina
Shelves: childrens
Any book that my 5 year old tries to read by herself wins in *my* book. This is a cute tale of a boy's adventures with a big red balloon at the zoo. The kids love to help read "That's good! No, that's bad!" which makes it fun interaction :)

(That said, I thought some of the pictures were just a little scary, but the preschoolers in my class seemed fine with them.)
Illustrated by David Catrow. This actually turned out funnier than I thought it would be. By the end of the the book, the "gimmick" of "That's good! NO! That's bad!" is really pretty funny. The illustrations are great too. I'm trying it with my storytime crew tonight and I'm sure they'll get a kick out of it.
Jun 10, 2010 Sheri rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read this as I was researching books written by editors of children's books. Liked the illustrations and the possibilities in the book. Good read aloud for children. Kids that like books about animals would like this one and the child's visit to each.
Apr 10, 2009 Connie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a great story about assumptions. The things that *seem* like they'll be good (getting a balloon) turn out to be bad, and the things that *seem* like they'll be bad (waking up a lion) turn out to be good after all!

We go back and forth like that, but there's a happy ending. That's GREAT!
Jan 14, 2009 Theresa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is a fun story of a little boy who goes on a big adventure and you get all sorts of surprises as things happen to him that you think are good but, "NO that's bad!" This is a good book to introduce zoo animals and have the children follow along as it is a involved moving book!
Mrs. Gabrielle Zastrow's
This was unbelievable and a bit confusing and weird. A little boy was crying because he wanted to get home to his parents. The stork brought him back to his parents, that wasn't good, it was great!

This story shows us how authors organize some stories with crazy problems and explanations!
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Margery Cuyler is the author of many books for children, including From Here to There, The Little Dump Truck, and That’s Good! That’s Bad! The idea for That’s Good! That’s Bad! was inspired by a conversation with her son, Thomas, who asked, "Can't bad things change into good things?" Ms. Cuyler grew up in the oldest house in Princeton, NJ, and started writing stories as soon as she learned how to ...more
More about Margery Cuyler...

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