Would I Ever Lie to You?

Overview

When your cousin is always telling outrageous tales, how do you know what to believe? He says you were hatched from an egg in the garden, and that sure sounds absurd. But not all of his stories are false: He was right about your aunt Mary not having teeth; and Dad agreed with him that, yes, your mom does have eyes in the back of her head! So when Ed tells you that your dessert—the piece of pie you’ve been looking forward to all meal long—is full of poison, what should you do?

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Overview

When your cousin is always telling outrageous tales, how do you know what to believe? He says you were hatched from an egg in the garden, and that sure sounds absurd. But not all of his stories are false: He was right about your aunt Mary not having teeth; and Dad agreed with him that, yes, your mom does have eyes in the back of her head! So when Ed tells you that your dessert—the piece of pie you’ve been looking forward to all meal long—is full of poison, what should you do?

In this spirited, silly book, the little kid finally gets to turn the tables on the big bully. And revenge is sweet as pie!

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

My cousin Ed is such a tease;/ He says outrageous things with ease," opens Buehner's (Goldilocks and the Three Bears) kid-pleasingly silly tale. Ed utters the first of his questionable truths in "a voice that dripped with dread," warning his younger cousin that devouring the delectable-looking blueberry pie in front of him may have fatal consequences ("It's full of poison, through and through-/ It might just be the end of you!"). This tall-tale teller also informs the comically wide-eyed narrator that he had watched him hatch from "a big green egg in the cabbage patch," that his head is shrinking and that the creaking noise at night is "just the alligators going to bed." Alas, Ed sometimes istelling the truth when he utters the improbable (there are redwood trees big enough that a car can drive through them and you can hear the sound of the ocean when holding a seashell up to your ear), so the narrator never knows when to trust his cousin. The breezy, rhyming verse comes full circle: returning to the possibly poisoned pie scenario, the narrator slyly tops Ed's droll deceptions with a doozy of his own. Comical exaggeration abounds in Davis's (Moose Tracks!) zany cartoons, rendered in watercolor, acrylic, colored pencil and ink. Images of outlandish hair styles, wild facial expressions and other funny flourishes will keep youngsters chuckling. Ages 4-up. (May)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Children's Literature - Joan Elste
This is a wonderfully comic take on a normal situation that often arises between children and their siblings or other children. In this case, the focus is a cousin who often tells lies but also sometimes tells true outlandish stories. It is hard to find the truth, but it is there and told with freshness not often found in poetry. Ed tells his younger cousin, discussing a piece of pie he has his eye on, that "[i]f you take a single bite, first you'll lose your appetite; You'll feel a burning in your belly, your arms and legs will turn to jelly. Your tongue will curl, your eyes will pop, your hair will fall out with a PLOP! You'll get big lumps and bumps and more while you're falling to the floor. Then you'll die! It's perfectly true. Would I ever lie to you?" Some of the scary tactics aren't lies at all. "Aunt Mary," Cousin Ed states, "has no teeth. I thought that was beyond belief. But when we spied there was no doubt. Because we saw her pop them out!" The illustrations fit the text perfectly, and a spectacular ending shows cousin Ed getting a taste of his own medicine. A real winner. Reviewer: Joan Elste
School Library Journal

K - Gr 4 - In jaunty rhyme, an unnamed narrator relates how his older cousin constantly teases him by telling him frightening lies: "Please don't eat that piece of pie;/That piece of pie could make you die!/It's full of poison, through and through-/It might just be the end of you!" The younger boy doesn't know when to believe him, because sometimes Ed does tell the truth. After a while, the narrator recognizes the teasing for what it is and plays an appropriate joke on his cousin. Many youngsters will identify with the problem of being taunted in this way by an older child, or even an adult. In one instance, Dad contributes to the problem by agreeing with his nephew that mothers have eyes in the back of their heads. Readers may be comforted by the protagonist's decreased gullibility at the story's end. Although his parents seem to be aware of the situation, they do not chastise Ed, making it seem all the more important for the younger boy to take his own action. The large, detailed cartoon illustrations in watercolor, acrylics, colored pencil, and ink add a great deal of interest and humor to the tale. During the poisoned pie episode, the narrator is drawn with eyes that practically pop off the page. This book can be enjoyed independently or shared with a group as a great lead-in for discussions about teasing and bullying.-Lynda Ritterman, Atco Elementary School, NJ

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Kirkus Reviews
A young narrator afflicted by an older relative with a fondness for playing head games finally exacts sweet revenge. Cousin Ed mixes fact and fancy so artfully that even his most outrageous claims-"When Ed and I were at the zoo, / Ed said, ‘That monkey looks like you! / When you grow up you'll live here too. / Don't cry, I'll come and visit you.' "-are hard to discount, and so when he warns that a luscious slice of blueberry pie is poisoned . . . well, what if it really is? Crowding the foregrounds with their big, freckled moon faces, Ed sports beneath a shock of red hair a disingenuous grin that contrasts comically with his victim's running expressions of worry and dismay. In the end, though, it's Ed who looks poleaxed, when the narrator resolutely takes a bite of pie-and proceeds to "die" horribly on the kitchen floor. A broad and less-strange alternative to Chris Van Allsburg's Probuditi! (2006), this offers just deserts for pranksters everywhere. (Picture book. 7-9)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780803727939
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 5/10/2007
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.86 (w) x 11.24 (h) x 0.43 (d)

Meet the Author

The husband-and-wife team behind the best-selling Snowmen at Night and Snowmen at Christmas, Carolyn and Mark Buehner are also the creators of the award-winning Fanny’s Dream. Upcoming collaborations include an original fairy tale about a lonely princess who decides to become a hairdresser. They live in Utah with their nine children.

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