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There is No Dog Paperback – Jan 8 2011


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Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Penguin Books Australia (Jan. 8 2011)
  • Language: Unknown
  • ISBN-10: 0141327189
  • ISBN-13: 978-0141327181
  • Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 1.9 x 21.6 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 281 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Format: Hardcover
It turns out that the reason the earth has problems is that God, supreme and almighty creator, was handed the job by his mother, who won it in a game of cosmic poker.

This is the glorious, zany, and often dark conceit of There Is No Dog, by Meg Rosoff. Our God, Bob, is an eternal teenager who sleeps late, mixes up Africa and America and then blames the subsequent droughts and floods on his non-existent dyslexia, and tends to fall in love with beautiful human girls, generally with disastrous results. He's taken care of by his majordomo, the mild-mannered and long-suffering Mr. B.

As the book opens, Bob falls for Lucy, a mortal assistant zookeeper, and his hormones jack into Earth's weather systems and create meteorological havoc. In the meantime, Bob's pet Eck (described as a sort of penguiny creature with a long snout who eats as though his stomach has no bottom) ends up on another deity's menu. Mr. B decides that at long last, he's had enough and puts in his resignation, leaving the fate of the planet in the hands of a kid who has flashes of brilliance but mostly insists that all the bad stuff that's happened as a direct result of his negligence, his whims, or his deep misunderstandings about how things should be, is simply not his fault!

Overall, this story delightful. Rosoff's writing style is reminiscent of Douglas Adams at his most tongue-in-cheek, and she pulls of the surreal with grace and ease. And this book has Eck, who is just marvelous. When we see the world through Eck's eyes, his infinite capacity to forgive and love underscores all of the problems with his owner.

All of the characters are well crafted. You want to smack Bob for his teenaged stupidity, give Mr.
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By Jamieson Wolf TOP 1000 REVIEWER on Aug. 21 2011
Format: Hardcover
The premise is a simple one: What if God were a teenage boy?

In the hands of any other author, the book would have been gimmicky, silly and slapstickish. But There Is No Dog is by the amazing, surprising and delightful Meg Rosoff, so we know that we're in for a treat.

In There Is No Dog, God is indeed a teenage boy. He watches over Earth with the help of Mr. B, his tired and somewhat frustrated by his assistant. Mr. B. Has reason to be frustrated, for there are many things wrong with the way God has been running things.

After winning Earth in a poker game, Mona (a Goddess of some renown) hands the job of God over to her son who is insolent, spoiled and not all that brilliant. He created the earth in six days because he was too tired and lazy to take any longer with it.

Mr. B has been left to clean up the mess, one prayer at a time. But there is only so much he can do. For answering one prayer might affect the schism of things in another way. Cure one child of rabies and perhaps the stock markets crash? Help one girl's dying mother and maybe the polar ice caps dry up? And the fact that God (whose name is Bob) created mortals in his own image is most troubling to Mr. B. How can a planet filled with insolent, greedy, intolerant boobs like Bob possibly survive?

However survive it must, even if God doesn't want anything to do with it. He is currently obsessed with a young mortal girl named Lucy, an assistant at the zoo. He loves her. He wants to marry her. He wants to have sex with her; and preferably not in the form of a swan this time. God isn't too sure what he was thinking when he did that.

When their courtship begins, strange things begin to happen.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 25 reviews
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
Dog spelled backwards is God Aug. 21 2011
By Jamieson Wolf - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
The premise is a simple one: What if God were a teenage boy?

In the hands of any other author, the book would have been gimmicky, silly and slapstickish. But There Is No Dog is by the amazing, surprising and delightful Meg Rosoff, so we know that we're in for a treat.

In There Is No Dog, God is indeed a teenage boy. He watches over Earth with the help of Mr. B, his tired and somewhat frustrated by his assistant. Mr. B. Has reason to be frustrated, for there are many things wrong with the way God has been running things.

After winning Earth in a poker game, Mona (a Goddess of some renown) hands the job of God over to her son who is insolent, spoiled and not all that brilliant. He created the earth in six days because he was too tired and lazy to take any longer with it.

Mr. B has been left to clean up the mess, one prayer at a time. But there is only so much he can do. For answering one prayer might affect the schism of things in another way. Cure one child of rabies and perhaps the stock markets crash? Help one girl's dying mother and maybe the polar ice caps dry up? And the fact that God (whose name is Bob) created mortals in his own image is most troubling to Mr. B. How can a planet filled with insolent, greedy, intolerant boobs like Bob possibly survive?

However survive it must, even if God doesn't want anything to do with it. He is currently obsessed with a young mortal girl named Lucy, an assistant at the zoo. He loves her. He wants to marry her. He wants to have sex with her; and preferably not in the form of a swan this time. God isn't too sure what he was thinking when he did that.

When their courtship begins, strange things begin to happen. Driven by the lusts and feelings of a teenage boy, the weather starts to be affected by Bob's wants and desires. Snow falls one day to be replaced by floods the next only to be replaced by sunshine. And then the rain begins to fall.

Earth is under siege by the weather and by Gods emotions. Mr. B is desperate. As floods begin to sweep across Earth, he begins to wonder, if he doesn't fix this mess, who will? While God is off following is pecker to prettier pastures, who will look after those that are on Earth?

Told with a deft hand and a keen eye for detail, Meg Rosoff has written her best book yet. It is also her funniest. I never thought a novel about God, religion, the fate of the human race, beliefs, creationism and love could be funny, but There Is No Dog is downright hilarious.

The joy of a Meg Rosoff novel is that you never really know what kind of story you're going to get. In How I Live Now, three young children must survive an apocalyptic world. In Just In Case, a young boy creates a new image and changes his name from David to Justin but is deterred by Fate. What I Was, we are treated to a love story of sorts that takes place at a boys boarding school where no one and nothing is as it seems. In The Bride's Farewell, a historical novel, Pell leaves on the day of her wedding to discover herself, only to discover that some things about herself she already knew. In Vamoose, a young girl gives birth to a moose baby and has to come to terms with her non-human child.

Rosoff never writes the same thing twice and is constantly surprising and constantly delightful. The surprises and delight are even more so in There Is No Dog. And though the novels that came before it are all gems of particular hues, There Is No Dog shines brightest for me. It's funny, ingenious, captivating and wonderful.

What is truly captivating about the novel is how human the immortal characters are. Rosoff shows us through plight, clever word play and everyday situations that even the divine can be human. Is it a commentary on religion and spirituality? Is it a commentary on what humans do to the world, the plight of the environment and the animals that live within the world? Perhaps.

But even more so, it is about the faith that we must have in each other and the belief in miracles that keeps us whole and positively brimming with life.

Now that is something worth reading about. All I can say is: Read this book. It is beautiful, witty, funny, delightful and wonderful in every way. Read this book and believe in the possibility of miracles.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
More Grown up than YA Feb. 16 2012
By KSluss - Published on Amazon.com
I am a card holding member of the community of adults, have a child and a house to prove it. Still, I like a lot of YA novels. I think a good book transcends age goups and genres. There is No Dog is one of those books. And, honestly, if this book is really "Young Adult" then I think the "Adult" part is literal. The main characters are not high schoolers, but are independent, job holding, apartment renting adults. When the book description says Bob is a sex crazed teenager, take that literally. Except, Bob is God and "teenager" is a subjective term for him. I wouldn't recommend this to a "young adult" under the age of 16, possibly older depending on how open minded mom and dad are about the birds and bees.

In the end, the message of this book was positive. I consider myself a believer. I attend church and have since I was a child and don't go just for community or socialization. I actually think God exists. I wasn't offended by the various concepts of God presented in this book; I can't speak for the more devout or fundamentalist-- they strike me as lacking the funny bones and suspensions of disbelief necessary to appreciate this book. I am often mistified by the way the world turns. Sometimes it does seem that God is petulant, moody, and self centered. Sometimes it seems he is a being of remarkable ingenuity and moments of grace and wisdom. Just like Bob.

Funny, insightful, charming. I really recommend this book to YAs and grown-ups too.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Try this on: God as a teenaged boy Jan. 26 2012
By Maggie Knapp - Published on Amazon.com
What if God were a sulky, hormonal teenage boy? Meg Rosoff heads down a very different path from her previous books, and imagines a world where Earth was won in a poker match, and entrusted to the care of teenaged Bob (with the help of long-suffering and wise Mr. B). When Bob gets a crush on beautiful Lucy, his moods are mirrored in unpredictable weather, though it seems that his heart is in the right place most of the time, and he doesn't mean any harm. This is a wry and sarcastic book, with a main character who is struck me as self-centered and annoying. My guess it you'll either like it a lot, or not at all. Fans of Terry Pratchett's DISCWORLD books seem like a likely fit to enjoy this book.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Not much to like May 22 2013
By Kim, consumer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
There was so much not to like in this book. I am a high school librarian and there are few books that I have not enjoyed. Being an optimist, I kept waiting for the book to improve, but it did not. Much of the book revolves around a selfish young man and his manipulation of the world to his "pleasure." His mother is similar and there is a scene where a pet is lost in a poker game and the pet is to be eaten! This drags on quite a bit as the pet contemplates his fate.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
A Fun Read Sept. 7 2012
By P. Stempski - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I think There Is No Dog is a funny, charming book and the best non-scientific, fantasy explanation of why the world is as it is that I have read thus far. I'm not quite sure of its intended readership. I think it would probably embarrass my teenage grandchildren, especially if their grandmother recommended it, so I recommend it to other adults but not the teenagers in my life. Seriously, for all of the books that I read and wonder afterwards why I even bothered, when I think of this one, it always makes me smile!

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