There is no Dog -- And his name is Bob

I found Meg Rosoff's There is no Dog in the YA section of a Chapters store. Teens should find the book funny for its irreverent philosophy but I wouldn't expect every adolescent boy to appreciate it. The premise is that God is incompetent and apathetic because he is a teenage boy. The job is foisted on Bob when his goddess mother loses a poker game.

Bob has a middle-aged adviser, Mr. B., whom he mistreats as only a spoiled teen can. Bob is too selfish, easily distracted and sex-obsessed to be bothered to look after Earth. He even flubs Creation because he rushes it in six days. Bob's genius consists of creating humans with a built-in desire to worship him, so he'll always be adored. It also gives him a whole planet of girls to chase.

Mr. B, who feels slighted to be passed over for the top job, does his best to alleviate some human suffering. In the end, he also fails, overwhelmed by a paperwork tower of prayers and problems.

This clever novel reads very quickly at 240 pages. It's one of those 'candy' books that affords simple pleasure but leaves little aftertaste. I don't recommend it to the extremely devout, unless they can tolerate a lot of playfulness in the premise. Reader know thyself.

Happy reading!

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