David v. God

David v. God

4.5 2
by Mary E. Pearson, Mary E. Pearson
     
 

So what do you do when your biology field trip takes a little detour—to heaven? If you're David James, the class clown, you demand an audience with God and challenge him to a debate. The prize? A ticket back to life. But David doesn't have a clue how a debate actually works, and so he teams up with Marie, a nerdy classmate who happens to be president of the

Overview

So what do you do when your biology field trip takes a little detour—to heaven? If you're David James, the class clown, you demand an audience with God and challenge him to a debate. The prize? A ticket back to life. But David doesn't have a clue how a debate actually works, and so he teams up with Marie, a nerdy classmate who happens to be president of the Speech and Debate Club. Their efforts seem thwarted at every step, but David sticks it out with Marie and wonders, Will a goof-off have what it takes to beat God? •A wildly funny and action-packed debut novel •A contemporary novel with an odd assortment of characters in an even odder setting—heaven.

Editorial Reviews

Joel Shoemaker
No leap of faith is required to enjoy this easy-to-read, fast-paced contemporary parable.
School Library Journal
Children's Literature - Children's Literature
"Make a wrong turn, Mrs. Dunne?" David asked, as he noticed himself, as well as his entire honors biology class and their teacher, floating upwards after the van crashed. He figured this was not a good thing, but it's hard to restrain a perfectly good wisecrack, even if one is doing the just-before-dying bit. And this was certainly not something David was going to take lying down, especially since some of the class, most particularly the Chief Nerd, Marie, were not people with whom he would choose to spend eternity, if it did come to that. David is sure God made a mistake, insists upon seeing God, and finally gets his way. He will be allowed to debate the question of whether or not he may return to life with God Himself. And since David joined the Debating Society solely because it would keep him from being suspended, he is a bit nervous--especially since God keeps leaving him notes suggesting he read Genesis to bone up for the debate, and Marie is pushing him to research precedents, opening arguments and other stuff that would win points. Both David and Marie learn a couple of useful things up there in that rarefied place, and this is a hilarious story with Biblical precedents about calling God to account--think Abraham and the Ten Righteous Men of Sodom--Jonah and his reaction to prophesying at Nineveh; Hannah bargaining for a child. Only slightly gross in spots, it should be appealing to boys as well as girls ages twelve and up and shouldn't be disallowed to ten and eleven-year-olds of some sophistication. 2000, Harcourt, Ages 10 to 12, $16.00. Reviewer: Judy Chernak—Children's Literature
VOYA - Voya Reviews
This first novel opens with a dynamite sentence: "David had thought he might be dying as he looked past his chest and saw his intestines splayed out before him." David and his honors biology classmates are on a field trip that turns tragic when their van crashes through a guardrail, killing everyone aboard. On the way to Heaven, David objects, certain that he is not meant to die just yet. He wangles an opportunity to debate God for a chance at getting his life back. Unfortunately David has not bothered to learn anything about debate, despite being on the school's debate team. Fortunately for David, team president Marie is likewise on the field trip and also seems to be wrongly dead. The story rockets along, with stereotyped characters--David is the spoiled rich kid, Marie is the scholarship student, nerdy and intent--and not much development. Readers might have a hard time suspending disbelief. When David and Marie prepare for the debate, God offers them his "journals"--Genesis, Isaiah, and Revelation. David resists reading them (of course), and wonders "if this was some kind of manual for Sega Genesis. Was God into video games, too?" When he gets around to reading, it is all completely new to him. He has apparently never heard of Adam and Eve or Noah's Ark. Even teens with no religious background or training at all have surely heard these stories--from cartoons, if nothing else. There are some nice moments when David finally meets God, but the whole thing feels rushed and simplistic. This novel is a pleasant enough quick read, but I kept feeling it could have been much better. VOYA CODES: 2Q 3P M (Better editing or work by the author might have warranted a 3Q; Will appeal withpushing; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8). 2000, Harcourt Brace, Ages 12 to 14, 144p, $16. Reviewer: Sarah Flowers
Kirkus Reviews
All Hell breaks loose when two classmates with wildly divergent personalities team up to debate God in a desperate quest for a one-way ticket back to life. When their school bus crashes while they are on a field trip, some misfits finds themselves on the way into heaven. But two of them are convinced it wasn't their time. With some frantic, irreverent fast talk, David claims his right to do battle with the boss of heaven to win his way down to earth. Illogical, undisciplined, and impulsive, he reluctantly accepts help from "The Byte Bitch" Marie, a classic dweeb whose single-minded academic focus is 180 degrees from David's outlook on life. Can these unlikely partners get it together in time to out-argue "The Big Kahuna"? Learning about each other seems to be part of the plan and, strangely enough, God seems to be trying to help. Deftly laced with equal parts goofball humor and perceptive insight, this first novel delivers a funny and fast-paced read on a heavenly topic. (Fiction. 12-14)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780152020583
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
04/28/2000
Pages:
144
Product dimensions:
5.81(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.96(d)
Age Range:
12 - 15 Years

Meet the Author

MARY E. PEARSON received her bachelor's degree from Long Beach State University and her teaching credential from San Diego State University. She lives in San Diego, California.

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David v. God 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This been one of the funniest book i have read in a long time i am not really a fan of reading a book constantly and so quickly as what i did with this one. I think it was becuase once i went home i went at it or the book is short?. I am not sure but the author of this book i will be looking for more books by her on this subject maybe a repeat
Guest More than 1 year ago
I'd been hearing GREAT things about this book, and couldn't wait to read it. Mary Pearson is a gifted, humorous writer who can successfuly blend serious topics into a light, fast-paced FUN book. David goes on a school field trip but a wrong turn lands him and his classmates in Heaven. Then it's up to David to debate his way out of this life and death situation. The ending was perfect!