Doug-Dennis and the Flyaway Fib

( 5 )


When best friends Doug-Dennis and Ben-Bobby go to the circus, something terrible happens. Doug- Dennis eats all of his friend's popcorn, and then tells a fib (It wasn't me!), which grows and grows (Maybe monsters ate it!), carrying Doug-Dennis away. As the lie gets bigger, Doug-Dennis flies higher, until he's floating in a land of lies-some of them big, some small, and some just downright weird. Doug-Dennis misses his best friend, and realizes there's only one way to come back ...

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When best friends Doug-Dennis and Ben-Bobby go to the circus, something terrible happens. Doug- Dennis eats all of his friend's popcorn, and then tells a fib (It wasn't me!), which grows and grows (Maybe monsters ate it!), carrying Doug-Dennis away. As the lie gets bigger, Doug-Dennis flies higher, until he's floating in a land of lies-some of them big, some small, and some just downright weird. Doug-Dennis misses his best friend, and realizes there's only one way to come back down: by finally telling the truth.

Darren Farrell, a bright new talent in picture books, has created a cautionary tale that's chock-full of hilarity. This charming sheep is sure to become a favorite. (And that's the truth.)

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Editorial Reviews

There's plenty of Mo Willems?type fun here, and this just might lead to a discussion of lies as well.
Children's Literature - Phyllis Kennemer
Doug-Dennis, a spindly looking sheep, and Ben-Bobby, a portly elephant, are bored. They decide to go the circus. Upon arriving, Doug-Dennis buys a candy bar and Ben-Bobby purchases popcorn. But when Ben-Bobby reaches for his treat, the box is empty. Doug-Dennis tells a lie. He claims that he did not eat the buttery, incredibly delicious popcorn. Monsters must have eaten it. Doug-Dennis gets so carried away with his lie that it grows and grows taking him out of this world and as far as a Big Fat Lie can stretch. He finds himself among many unsavory people and creatures, including a bug who is claiming to have invented the "inter-web." As his guilt and isolation grow, Doug-Dennis knows what he has to do. He confesses. He lands back at the circus where he discovers that Ben-Bobby is unperturbed. He has eaten the candy bar left behind. Cartoonlike illustrations in flat colors take up most of the space throughout. The right eyes of all of the animals are encased in large pink circles. The left eye is a pinprick black dot. The eyes of the people are all tiny dots without the pink. Adults may enjoy using the book to instigate discussions of truth-telling with young children. Reviewer: Phyllis Kennemer, Ph.D.
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 1—Doug-Dennis, a sneaker and cap-wearing sheep, goes to the circus with Ben-Bobby, an elephant with jet-black hair. In the midst of the action, Dougy commits the cardinal friend-offense; he eats Ben-Bobby's popcorn and then lies about it. After telling his fib, he is immediately launched into space where he is surrounded by all sorts of other liars (everyone from kids with imaginary friends to used-car salesmen) and eventually figures out that the only way to escape is to tell the truth. Farrell's offhanded humor and the absolute absurdity of the situation and characters make this a fun lesson in truth-telling. The pen and ink and digitally created cartoon illustrations feel almost childlike in their imagination (the animals inexplicably have pink eye patches over one eye) and contain hidden gems of humor, much like the text. Each page contains dialogue and characters that offer funny asides and quips beyond the main story. Much like the work of funnymen Jon Scieszka, Lane Smith, and Mo Willems, some of the humor is intended for adults, but the absolute silliness of the story will have young readers giggling as well. Farrell takes the typically dull subject of lying and offers a wacky sheep and elephant friendship as a way of opening up family conversations about telling the truth.—Sarah Townsend, Norfolk Public Library, VA
Publishers Weekly
Sharp-edged irony and wacky cartoon visuals provide newcomer Farrell's moral tale with some serious wattage. Doug-Dennis, a rather vacant-looking sheep with stick legs and red basketball sneakers, can't bring himself to confess that he's eaten his friend Ben-Bobby's popcorn. After he tells a fib (“Hmm, maybe it was monsters. Yeah, that's it, monsters!!”), he quickly gets “carried away”—quite literally—by the very speech balloons that contain his fibs. To the amazement of onlookers below, he floats across the continents on his own hot air before arriving in a sort of fibbers' purgatory in outer space. Surrounded by hardcore fibbers (“This limited time offer is the deal of the century!!!” announces a man with five o'clock shadow and a briefcase), Doug-Dennis is so lonely and unsettled that he finds it in himself to confess, which allows him to descend to earth and make up with Ben-Bobby. Despite the antifib message, the fibs are where all the entertainment is (“I invented the inter-web,” declares a spider), and the ethically unsteady Doug-Dennis has plenty of Homer Simpson–like appeal. Ages 5–8. (Mar.)
Kirkus Reviews
Sheep Doug-Dennis and elephant Ben-Bobby are great friends, the type of buddies who go to the circus when bored. But when Doug-Dennis eats all of Ben-Bobby's popcorn before the circus even starts, he decides to lie about it. The fib carries Doug-Dennis far away, into the heavens, as far as the truth will stretch. The story is told mostly through speech bubbles with amusing pen-and-ink cartoon drawings that move the familiar theme to a story of hilarious and exaggerated lengths. The image of the putty-limbed Doug-Dennis floating in outer space, attached only to his growing, speech-bubbled lie, among other lies and liars ("Who went pee? Where?" exclaims one innocent-looking little pup), will resonate with both young readers and the adults who read to them. This is no simple didactic treatise on the evils of lying; newcomer Farrell gives sound advice about getting out of a fib. Young readers and listeners will laugh with recognition at Doug-Dennis's familiar plight and, after a few readings, will be reading it themselves. A promising first book; here's hoping his second is just as funny. (Picture book. 4-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780803734371
  • Publisher: Penguin Young Readers Group
  • Publication date: 3/4/2010
  • Pages: 40
  • Sales rank: 696,712
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 11.20 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Darren Farrell lives in Hoboken, New Jersey.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 5 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 15, 2010

    Everyone in my class really liked it and laughed alot!

    Doug-Darren (that's a fib already, the author isn't Doug-Darren he's just plain Darren) came to our class and read Doug-Dennis and the Flyaway Fib to us. He did all these great voices and pointed out all these extra things in the pictures that we probably wouldn't have noticed if we read it all by ourselves. He gave us some stickers and most of us put them on our notebooks so we can laugh when we look at the picture of Doug-Dennis and remember all those funny fibs. All of us in the class are going to tell our friends about Doug-Dennis and I bet they will make their parents go to the bookstore and buy them their own Doug-Dennis book. I am going to make my Dad take me to Barnes and Noble on Saturday because I am going to a birthday party for my friend Susan-Vincent (that's really her name) and I want to give her the book. We love to tell fibs but only for fun. We never tell our parents fibs, except sometimes we tell them we've finished our homework when we want to play video games. Sometimes they know we're not telling them the truth - but that's only a little fib, right? written by Lavinia-Gail and I wrote this all by myself (well, that's kind of a fib, my Dad helped a little)

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 8, 2014

    Not worth $10.00

    This was like a 99 cent book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 20, 2010

    Viva La Doug!

    Doug-Dennis and the Flyaway Fib receives high marks from both parents and children. It joins a select number of special books that both you AND your kids will want to read again and again and again. The fibs are simply hilarious and the friendship between Doug-Dennis, a sheep, and his best bud Ben-Bobby, an elephant, is touching. We are left agreeing that honesty really is the best policy.

    At no point is the honesty message heavy-handed. Farrell manages to pull off a serious morality tale that feels as light and lovable as his adorable pen-and-ink sheep.

    A must buy!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 30, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 28, 2014

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews

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