Posted in Fiction, Intermediate, picture books

Can a good egg set a bad apple straight?

Good Egg and Bad Apple, by Henry Herz/Illustrated by Luke Graber, (Sept. 2018, Schiffer Publishing), $16.99, ISBN: 9780764356032

Ages 5-8

Bad Apple is a bully. He taunts all the other food, and his Second Banana – a literal banana – is right there, egging him on (no pun intended. Okay, maybe a little). Good Egg stands his ground and when the bullies start on him, Egg pulls the one weapon out of his arsenal that he thinks has a chance of working: he tells Apple a joke. Sure enough, the humor eases the tension, and Apple joins Egg’s group of friends.

Good Egg and Bad Apple is a fable of sorts, with food standing in to teach kids about bullying and why some bullies do it. In this case, the bully was bullied – sour grapes called Bad Apple names – and as the old saying goes, “hurt people hurt people”. Egg tried to reason with his bully, and it worked. It’s a perfect situation in a perfect world, but if it stops one kid from bullying another, I’ll take it.

The author also uses puns and idioms throughout the story. a glossary at the end explains both forms of speech and provides a list of wordplay used in the story, like “Let us help him”, a quote from Lettuce. The full-page artwork gives the food exaggerated expressions, with large, expressive eyes and wide open mouths (bad guys have a single tooth, to look like quintessential tough guys). Good Egg and Bad Apple works as an additional purchase for morality and bullying collections.


I'm a mom, a children's librarian, bibliophile, and obsessive knitter. I'm a pop culture junkie and a proud nerd, and favorite reads usually fall into Sci-Fi/Fantasy. I review comics and graphic novels at WhatchaReading ( I'm also the co-founder of On Wednesdays We Wear Capes (, where I discuss pop culture and geek fandom from a female point of view.

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