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God Got a Dog Hardcover


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 10 and up
  • Grade Level: 5 and up
  • Hardcover: 48 pages
  • Publisher: Beach Lane Books (October 29, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1442465182
  • ISBN-13: 978-1442465183
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 6.7 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #32,321 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 5 Up-An award-winning author and illustrator team up to create a lyrical celebration of where the divine meets the mundane, and ultimately what it means to be human. In this small book of poetry, God decides to "try out" different activities and experiences of humanity, and the results are by turns thought-provoking and inspiring. Each of the 15 poems is coupled with a quietly incandescent illustration that supports the text but doesn't overwhelm it or diminish its impact. Taken from the author's longer collection God Went to Beauty School (HarperCollins, 2003), this slimmed down, repackaged version brilliantly captures its sweetness and substance but provides a simpler progression and arc. Selections alternate pronouns for the deity, with God referred to as He or She in each poem. In "God Got Arrested," his anger "erupted like/the wrath of.../Oh, right./Never mind." While this title might be controversial and potentially inappropriate for some religious institutions, it will appeal to a wide audience of both children and adults. This is one book that's easy to pick up, but hard to put down again.-Stephanie Whelan, New York Public Libraryα(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Oh, God. As this book so intriguingly suggests, You do come in many shapes and sizes. Colors, too. But more than what the deity looks like, this slim volume of 15 poems focuses on what God does. Each poem title is a declarative sentence with a strong verb: “God woke up.” “God went to beauty school.” And tenderly, “God found God.” The free verse suggests faces of God that probably won’t be familiar to Sunday school students. For instance, when “God went to India,” it was to see elephants, one of the best things he has made. Elephants know how to mourn, as God does, because he has lost everything: “You make life / You make death.” When “God got a boat,” she is surprised to discover how much sense her creation makes, far more so than looking at Earth from far away. And after “God went skating,” it’s clear that the occasional invincibility God feels is matched by a willingness to try new things. The messages aren’t always immediately clear, but that’s what makes this so much fun. Seeing God in new ways allows children to think about their relationship to him or her differently. In this interpretation, God and humans are cocreators of an evolving world. Though the poetry has been published before in a collection, the artwork is all new. Frazee’s pictures, each facing a page of text, are a powerful contrast of light and darkness, restlessness and contentment. God didn’t think she had time for a dog. But she got one anyway. Grades 6-9. --Ilene Cooper

More About the Author

Cynthia Rylant is the author of numerous distinguished novels and picture books for young readers. In addition to her beginning-reader series: Henry and Mudge, Poppleton, and Mr. Putter and Tabby, as well as her Cobble Street Cousins early-chapter series, she is also the author of the Newbery Medal-winning Missing May, the Newbery Honor Book A Fine White Dust, and two Caldecott Honor-winning picture books.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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See all 21 customer reviews
And while I think it’s appropriate for children, I certainly don’t think this book is solely for them.
E. R. Bird
I am back now to buy more copies for family members and friends - this is a book which simply MUST be shared.
E. John Buesing
Unassuming, simple, and gentle illustrations are an ideal complement to the gentle, sweet and engaging poems.
M. Brennan

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By TGL on November 17, 2013
Format: Hardcover
By giving God human qualities - including earthly needs, doubt and joy - the author helps us understand Him (Her?) and broadens the definition of what He/She may be, to a point just short of suggesting that God may actually be within us. It's a bit new-agey, but in these times of religious extremism and polarization, a welcome lesson for children and adults alike. My favorite poem is "God went to India" because it has God grappling with the unsolvable problems of suffering and death. But don't be dissuaded by the occasional solemn mood; overall this is an imaginative, inspiring and beautiful book of poems for all ages. Special kudos to the brilliant illustrator Mara Frazee, who puts real-life characters in atmospheric settings to visually convey the theme of God either walking among us or, more romantically, as one of us.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By E. R. Bird HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on November 3, 2013
Format: Hardcover
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about whom children’s books are really for. Kids, obviously. And parents that will have to (hopefully, potentially) read those books over and over again. Children’s books are flexible objects, though. Their stated audience is in the 0-12 age range, but recently you’ve been seeing them used for other purposes. Graduates from high school get inspirational picture books to send them on their way. Psychiatrists keep picture books around for their patients, using them to work through various worries and anxieties. Adults gift them to one other because there’s something about the simplicity of a children’s book that can be infinitely comforting. So when we pick up a little book of poems like those in God Got a Dog we start by wondering who the intended audience is. Kids? Teens? Adults? The spiritual? The agnostic? After reading it through several times, I think my answer is, “Everybody”. The God in this book is everything from a nine-year-old girl to a broken man on a swing. If He can be anyone then this book is for everyone.

In this book you will find sixteen poems culled from author Cynthia Rylant’s 2003 YA title God Went to Beauty School and illustrated by the inestimable genius of Marla Frazee. Each poem relates a small attempt on God’s part to do something human. Sometimes he is successful (he opens a nail salon, goes skating, and finds God, which is a bit confusing for Him). Sometimes he is a bit dejected (He catches a cold, gets arrested, and gets a desk job that She (the gender shifts abound) only gets through because She eats thirty-seven Snickers bars). We see God’s highs and lows and He’s this infinitely relatable, great person. The final poem is “God got a dog” which ends with, “. . .
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ann Dettwiler on January 18, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Wonderful illustrations and some poetry that makes one think.....in a manner one wouldn't usually think. It is progressive and thought-provoking. We love it!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Tobe Zalinger on January 12, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is wonderful. I have given away my copy and have
purchased several more for friends for different occasions.
Pick it up for a quick moment and feel better !
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Stacey Gregory on January 9, 2014
Format: Hardcover
I rarely give a book 5 stars. I think every person should read this. Ms Rylant makes God real. Like us only better. My favorite is God goes to the Doctor and God gets Arrested.
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By Carol S. Shulman on March 16, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a very original book. It is deeply profound and moving as well as charming and funny. I love it.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Cynthia Rylant is one of my very favorite authors. Like THE HEAVENLY VILLAGE, God enjoys food in one of these poems (or why would there be so much wonderful food she points out). These poems would help middle schoolers think about and discuss religion. The poems would be good warm ups for Sunday School class, maybe.
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By Mary on March 3, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I love the poems and illustrations in this book - it's charming, funny and thought-provoking. I've already given as a gift to three friends.
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