The Fourteenth Goldfish
Author: Jennifer L. Holm
Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers
Date: August 26, 2016
Length: 210 pages
Grade Level: Grades 3 - 7
About the Author
Jennifer Holm is the NY Times bestselling author of three Newbery Honor Books, as well as the co-creator of the Babymouse series (a 2013 Eisner Award Winner) and Squish series, which she collaborates on with her brother Matthew Holm.
Believe In The Possible
Eleven-year-old Ellie has never liked change. She misses fifth grade, her best friend and even her recently departed pet goldfish.
One day a strange boy shows up at her house. He looks a lot like Ellie's grandfather, a scientist who's always been interested in discovering a fountain of youth. Could this teenager really be Grandpa Melvin?
This story explores questions about science, family, friendship, immortality and possibility.
(From the end of Chapter 11)
"I'm proud of you," my grandfather says to me.
"But I didn't get it," I tell him.
He shakes his head. "Scientists fail all the time. You tried. That
is what counts. You have to keep at it just like Marie Curie."
It feels like a compliment.
"What did she do?"
"Marie Curie won a Nobel for her work on radiation."
"Do you think I'll ever win a Nobel?" I ask.
"Of course you will," he says without a second's hesitation.
And I believe him.
It has been a long time since I have read a fiction book for middle school students. This book was a real joy to read. It deals with the cycle of life in a way that children will understand that growing old is a natural part of life and should not be feared.
The humorous interactions between Ellie and her now teenage Grandpa Melvin are just priceless. Grandpa has the experience and knowledge of a senior citizen but is now living in the body of a teenager. He teaches Ellie to love science and to believe in herself...and the possible.
I think this book will be popular with both girls and boys. It would be a perfect read-aloud selection for middle school classrooms and homeschool environments. I predict this will be another award-winning book for Ms. Holm. Highly Recommended!
My Rating: 5 Stars Out Of 5
FYI ~ I received a complimentary digital copy of this book to read and review from NetGalley.
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