Good Thing You're Not an Octopus!


If you were an octopus, you'd have eight legs to put into pants!

Follow one little boy through his day as he playfully considers how mealtime, bath time, nap time, and many other activities would be different if he were a bird, a tiger, or any number of baby animals. Julie Markes's first picture book is charmingly illustrated by Maggie Smith.

A little boy finds that his life is pretty easy ...

See more details below
Paperback (REPRINT)
$6.99 price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (14) from $1.99   
  • New (7) from $3.66   
  • Used (7) from $1.99   
Note: Kids' Club Eligible. See More Details.
Sending request ...


If you were an octopus, you'd have eight legs to put into pants!

Follow one little boy through his day as he playfully considers how mealtime, bath time, nap time, and many other activities would be different if he were a bird, a tiger, or any number of baby animals. Julie Markes's first picture book is charmingly illustrated by Maggie Smith.

A little boy finds that his life is pretty easy compared to how it might be.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
"You do not like to brush your teeth? It is a good thing you're not a shark. If you were a shark, you could have two hundred teeth to brush." Patterned language and repetition of form encourage children to join in by calling and responding. This is followed by a comparison with the animal kingdom that makes the child's activity seem not so bad after all. Summary pages at the conclusion show a child enthusiastically getting dressed, going for a ride, eating lunch, taking a nap, taking a bath, and brushing teeth. "PHEW!" Maggie Smith's lively illustrations include stuffed animals, and toys and/or books about animals later discussed by the narrator. Some sentences could be tighter. Julie Markes' first picture book is great for story time. 2001, HarperCollins Publishers, and Ages 2 to 4.
—Mary B. Bauer <%ISBN%>006028465X
School Library Journal
PreS-A delightful romp with a little boy who is reluctant to do those daily activities that are part of a preschooler's learning experience. As readers follow him and his stuffed frog through the day, comparisons to various animals are drawn. As he struggles to get dressed, the narrative reads, "If you were an octopus, you would have eight legs to put in your pants!" The accompanying illustration shows an exasperated octopus looking troubled at his attempt to accomplish this feat. Other comparisons include a caterpillar trying to put on 16 shoes, a shark brushing 200 teeth, and a bear having to nap all winter long. All conclude with the refrain, "It's a good thing you're not a-." In the end, the preschooler's challenges are summed up with "It's a good thing you're you!" Just enough science information for preschoolers to absorb is presented simply and entertainingly and Smith's watercolor illustrations in bright, bold colors are whimsical and charming. The ridiculousness of the animals in the boy's situation will not be lost on this age group and will prompt laughter all around.-Patti Gonzales, Los Angeles Public Library Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
PLB: 0-06-028466-8 First-time author Markes's impish tale will tickle tiny funny bones. Burdensome tasks seem a lot less onerous to a young boy when he considers the alternatives. Focusing on mundane happenings in a toddler's typical day, Markes touches on a host of classic toddler power struggles: getting dressed, submitting to the confines of a car seat, and the dreaded bedtime, with its attendant traumas of brushing teeth and taking a bath. However, a quick peek at the animal kingdom provides the recalcitrant tot with all the motivation he needs to determine that the grass is greener on his side of the fence. Loathe naptime? Just think, Markes cautions readers,"If you were a bear, you would have to nap all winter long!" Preschoolers will delight in the unabashedly silly animal/human comparisons, and may even learn a little something too. For instance, donning one pair of shoes seems a breeze in comparison to a caterpillar's whopping 16 tootsies that would need to be shod. Smith's (Dear Daisy, Get Well Soon, 2000, etc.) lighthearted, full-color illustrations provide a perfect comic counterpart to the outlandish tale. Each topic culminates in a full-bleed, two-page illustration depicting both the human and animal youngsters engaged in similar activities, with uproariously funny results. A wonderfully droll way to diffuse toddler tantrums, this should be tucked into every diaper bag. (Picture book. 3-6)
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780064435864
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 2/21/2006
  • Edition description: REPRINT
  • Pages: 40
  • Sales rank: 197,677
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.75 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 0.09 (d)

Meet the Author

Julie Markes lives with her husband, Eric Schine, and their two sons, Charlie and Nicholas, in Brooklyn, New York. Her books include Thanks For Thanksgiving; I Can't Talk Yet, But When I Do ...; Good Thing You're Not An Octopus!; Sidewalk 123; and Sidewalk.

Maggie Smith thinks it's a good thing she's not an octopus—it would be too hard to draw underwater! She is the author and illustrator of There's a Witch Under the Stairs, Counting Our Way to Maine, Dear Daisy, Get Well Soon, and other titles. Ms. Smith lives in New York City.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)