Oh! If Only...

  • Interest Level: Preschool - Grade 3
  • Reading Level: Grade 2

Sometimes big things have very small beginnings. "Oh! If only . . . I had stayed home that day . . . If only . . . I hadn’t met that dog . . . If only . . . he didn’t want to play . . . " And so begins a remarkably funny chain of events as one young boy and a dog unwittingly unleash the greatest havoc imaginable.

Format Your Price Add
Interest Level Preschool - Grade 3
Reading Level Grade 2
Genre Picture Books
Copyright 2011
Publisher Andersen Press USA
Imprint Andersen Press USA
Language English
Number of Pages 32
Publication Date 2014-08-01
Text Type Fiction
BISACS JUV019000, JUV043000, JUV051000
Dewey [E]
Graphics Full-color illustrations
Dimensions 10.5 x 11
Features Awards, Original artwork, and Reviewed


  • Children's Book Committee at Bank Street College Best Children's Book of the Year, Winner, 2014


Spirituality & Practice


Book Review
By Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
Oh! If Only . . .
Michael Foreman

Sometimes it is the little things that cascade out of control and cause big time chaos. A little thing can be practicing soccer with a red ball that gets away from the boy. A dog chases after it and frightens an old lady’s cats, who then frighten the birds, who spook the horses in a parade, and ruin the Queen’s birthday.

Guess what? With chaos all around, the dog is still chasing the red ball into the palace where he demolishes the birthday cake and other fancy stuff. And just when the boy thought he could forget the whole crazy incident, the dog returns with the red ball, and the media is there to cover his embarrassment.

This frolicsome children’s picture book is written and illustrated by Michael Foreman and designed for children from 4 to 9 years old. Although we want to control things and have them happen in the way we want them to happen, we must take whatever comes our way and make the best of it. This is how we develop resilience.

School Library Journal

“Nearly every page is full of movement as animals fly or scamper away, and bright primary colors highlight focal points. Kids will enjoy the increasing destruction and silliness, while the minimal text and refrain make this a good read-aloud.” —School Library Journal

Kirkus Reviews

“Foreman’s minimal text sometimes tumbles and dances across the page, and his watercolor-and-pastel illustrations capture both motion and dumbstruck faces hilariously. A blithe romp.” —Kirkus Reviews

Author, Illustrator: Michael Foreman

Michael Foreman is an award-winning author. He has won the Kate Greenaway Medal twice and has been the UK nominee for the Hans Christian Andersen Award twice. His books are published all over the world. He lives in the UK.