Ellie is eleven years old, feeling a little lost in middle school. Her parents are involved in the theater, and over the summer she “lost” her best friend to volleyball. Everyone is encouraging Ellie to find her passion, but she just doesn’t know what that is. When Melvin, her scientist grandfather is caught breaking and entering into his own lab, he comes to live with Ellie and her mom. He has to live with them because he can’t live on his own - everyone thinks he is thirteen! Melvin has discovered a way to reverse aging, and tested it on himself. He goes to middle school along with Ellie, helping her open doors to friendships, adventure, and finding her own passion - science.
I’m excited that this book is out there for young people to read! I feel like it’s especially an important book for girls, because of the stress of science, how appealing it can be, and how much Ellie falls in love with the subject. I can see this being a popular book (and series?) among young kids, and I think it could generate a lot of interest in STEM and Maker Space programs at libraries.
Reviews & Awards
From School Library Journal: “With humor and heart, Holm has crafted a story about life, family, and finding one's passion that will appeal to readers willing to imagine the possible.” Starred reviews in Publishers Weekly and Booklist.
Read it for yourself!
Holm, Jennifer L. 2014. The Fourteenth Goldfish. New York: Random House. ISBN 9780375870644