55 books like The Fourteenth Goldfish

By Jennifer L. Holm,

Here are 55 books that The Fourteenth Goldfish fans have personally recommended if you like The Fourteenth Goldfish. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

Shepherd is reader supported. When you buy books, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Book cover of The City of Ember

Summer Rachel Short Author Of The Mutant Mushroom Takeover

From my list on sci-fi books for kids who think they don’t like Sci-Fi.

Why am I passionate about this?

I grew up with a scientist dad who often discussed bits of research or new discoveries around the dinner table. I didn’t follow in his footsteps and get a Ph.D., but I did develop a fascination with scientific happenings, particularly of the weird or unexplained variety. In college, I worked as the science reporter for my university’s newspaper, where I wrote on topics like nanotech tweezers, poultry farm pollution, and the nighttime habits of spiders and snakes. I’m also the author of two science fiction books for young readers.

Summer's book list on sci-fi books for kids who think they don’t like Sci-Fi

Summer Rachel Short Why did Summer love this book?

The unique underground setting hooked me from the start.

Ember is the last beacon of light in a darkened world, and now even its great lamps are at risk of going out. Friends Lina and Doon must find a way to keep them burning or face utter darkness and the end of civilization as they know it.

I loved the post-apocalyptic feel to this story, as well as all the mysteries and secrets lurking behind every dimly lit corner. 

By Jeanne DuPrau,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked The City of Ember as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

Ember is the only light in a dark world. But when its lamps begin to flicker, two friends must race to escape the dark. This highly acclaimed adventure series is a modern-day classic-with over 4 MILLION copies sold!

The city of Ember was built as a last refuge for the human race. Two hundred years later, the great lamps that light the city are beginning to dim. When Lina finds part of an ancient message, she's sure it holds a secret that will save the city. Now, she and her friend Doon must race to figure out the clues to…


Book cover of The Giver

Jesse Maas Author Of Not for the Faint of Heart

From my list on fiction books that capture the meaning of simply being human.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am passionate about writing books that put good into the world and highlight meaningful and inspiring themes, which, in turn, means I am also passionate about reading books that do the same. I love to write and read books that leave the reader feeling like there is still good in the world, even when it seems to be very dark around us. If people read my books or any on this list, I sincerely hope they feel encouraged and inspired and enjoy them as much as I do.

Jesse's book list on fiction books that capture the meaning of simply being human

Jesse Maas Why did Jesse love this book?

While I don’t always love mainstream classics, The Giver is a classic for a reason, and, in my opinion, it rightfully deserves its place on the shelf.

I love the emotional draw of this book and the invitation to think deeper about the meaning of life and the burden it can take on us. I love books that challenge us to think about the bigger concepts of life and all they entail: the good, the bad, and the ugly.

By Lois Lowry,

Why should I read it?

21 authors picked The Giver as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 10, 11, 12, and 13.

What is this book about?

THE GIVER is soon to be a major motion picture starring Jeff Bridges, Katie Holmes and Taylor Swift.

Now available for the first time in the UK, THE GIVER QUARTET is the complete four-novel collection.

THE GIVER: It is the future. There is no war, no hunger, no pain. No one in the community wants for anything. Everything needed is provided. And at twelve years old, each member of the community has their profession carefully chosen for them by the Committee of Elders.

Jonas has never thought there was anything wrong with his world. But from the moment he is…


Book cover of The Care and Feeding of a Pet Black Hole

Summer Rachel Short Author Of The Mutant Mushroom Takeover

From my list on sci-fi books for kids who think they don’t like Sci-Fi.

Why am I passionate about this?

I grew up with a scientist dad who often discussed bits of research or new discoveries around the dinner table. I didn’t follow in his footsteps and get a Ph.D., but I did develop a fascination with scientific happenings, particularly of the weird or unexplained variety. In college, I worked as the science reporter for my university’s newspaper, where I wrote on topics like nanotech tweezers, poultry farm pollution, and the nighttime habits of spiders and snakes. I’m also the author of two science fiction books for young readers.

Summer's book list on sci-fi books for kids who think they don’t like Sci-Fi

Summer Rachel Short Why did Summer love this book?

I loved how original this book was. Stella’s obsessed with space, and when she pays a visit to NASA, a lonely black hole follows her home.

At first, it’s great. The black hole sucks up all the things she doesn’t want around anymore—the stinky school hamster, ugly clothes, and, most importantly, all the sad memories of her recently deceased dad.

One thing I appreciated about this story was that the black hole had its own unique personality. Stella even names it—Larry, short for singularity. Larry is sucking everything into himself to try and take away his emptiness. I found this story touching and sweet, but it also made me laugh. I especially enjoyed the bits where Stella tries to train Larry to be a good black hole, but it’s a big job!

By Michelle Cuevas,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Care and Feeding of a Pet Black Hole as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

"So wait," said Cosmo. "If we go in that door, we might exit on the other side of the galaxy?"'
"I don't know," I said. "But we currently live in a tub in a black hole, so what do we have to lose?"

When eleven-year-old space mad Stella Rodriguez shows up at NASA to request that her recording be included in Carl Sagan's Golden Record, something unexpected happens: A black hole follows her home, and sets out to live in her house as a pet. The black hole swallows everything he touches, which is challenging to say the least -…


Book cover of A Place to Hang the Moon

Charlotte Herman Author Of My Chocolate Year: A Novel with 12 Recipes

From my list on for children on WW2 at home and across the ocean.

Why am I passionate about this?

I grew up on Chicago’s home front during WW2. President Roosevelt wanted everyone—adults and children—to do their part for the war effort. So we neighborhood kids formed a Victory club, where we marched around singing, “Let’s Remember Pearl Harbor,” and other patriotic songs. And though we had fun, we understood the meaning of the gold stars in the windows, and knew that terrible things were happening on the other side of the world. There are so many wonderful books set during this time period, and I can never read enough of them. These books, along with my memories, are what inspire me to write historical fiction of my own.

Charlotte's book list on for children on WW2 at home and across the ocean

Charlotte Herman Why did Charlotte love this book?

In this heartwarming novel, we meet William, Edmund, and Anna; three orphaned siblings who are among the children evacuated from London to the safety of the countryside in 1940. I was drawn to the three from the very beginning. They love and care for one another, and are determined to stay together. Despite the cruelty and neglect they face, they can still find humor in the most unlikely situations. But will they find a family that will keep them forever? If I were a character in the story, I would adopt them in a heartbeat.

By Kate Albus,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked A Place to Hang the Moon as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 9, 10, 11, and 12.

What is this book about?

A heartwarming story about three siblings, evacuated from London to live in the countryside, looking for a permanent home--and a new meaning for family.

A New York Public Library Best Book of the Year

It is 1940 and William, 12, Edmund, 11, and Anna, 9, aren't terribly upset by the death of the not-so-grandmotherly grandmother who has taken care of them since their parents died.

But the children do need a guardian, and in the dark days of World War II London, those are in short supply, especially if they hope to stay together. Could the mass wartime evacuation of…


Book cover of New Kid

Alyssa Bermudez Author Of Big Apple Diaries

From my list on graphic novels for young readers to encourage empathy.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a graphic novel creator and art teacher with years of experience, I understand the importance of introducing serious topics for discussion in an accessible way. My art students of all ages are curious about different subjects, wondering what life is like for others and if their own feelings are normal. Graphic novels are a perfect tool for fostering these discussions. Having been interested in comics as a medium for a long time, I'm thrilled to share this with young audiences and encourage exploration of diverse perspectives.

Alyssa's book list on graphic novels for young readers to encourage empathy

Alyssa Bermudez Why did Alyssa love this book?

Representation in literature matters, and Jerry Craft's book offers a unique perspective on a young boy's experience of transferring to a private middle school where he stands out due to his race and socioeconomic background.

The book thoughtfully highlights microaggressions and their impact, making it an essential read for children. It's an excellent starting point for important conversations on race, identity, and friendship.

By Jerry Craft,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked New Kid as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

Winner of the Newbery Medal, Coretta Scott King Author Award, and Kirkus Prize for Young Readers' Literature!

Perfect for fans of Raina Telgemeier and Gene Luen Yang, New Kid is a timely, honest graphic novel about starting over at a new school where diversity is low and the struggle to fit in is real, from award-winning author-illustrator Jerry Craft.

Seventh grader Jordan Banks loves nothing more than drawing cartoons about his life. But instead of sending him to the art school of his dreams, his parents enroll him in a prestigious private school known for its academics, where Jordan is…


Book cover of Merci Suárez Changes Gears

M. Tara Crowl Author Of Eden's Wish

From my list on middle-grade to make you feel good about the world.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a shy, dreamy kid, I relied on middle-grade books to learn about the world and feel less alone. That’s why I eventually started writing them. Growing up can be hard. Being grown-up can, too. Fiction can thrill, educate, and stimulate, and I love it for those reasons. But sometimes, I want a book to assure me things are going to be okay. In case you’d forgotten that the world can be scary and unpredictable, the last couple of years probably reminded you. I continue to find comfort in middle-grade books that make my heart feel full, tender, and hopeful. I needed books like these back then, and still need them today.

M. Tara's book list on middle-grade to make you feel good about the world

M. Tara Crowl Why did M. Tara love this book?

Attending a private school on scholarship among wealthy classmates, Merci Suárez never feels like she belongs. Her family has always been close, with three generations living in houses nestled next to one another, but lately, things aren’t easy at home, either. Merci’s grandfather is acting in ways she doesn’t understand, and she knows the others are hiding something from her.

I love Merci’s spirited, spunky personality and loving family. She navigates conflicts with courage, pluck, and honesty. The way she faces challenges gives me the confidence to take mine on.

By Meg Medina,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Merci Suárez Changes Gears as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 9, 10, 11, and 12.

What is this book about?

Winner of the Newbery Medal
A New York Times Bestseller

“The realistic portrayal of a complex young Latina’s life is one many readers will relate to. . . . Medina cruises into readers’ hearts.” — School Library Journal (starred review)

Merci Suárez knew that sixth grade would be different, but she had no idea just how different. For starters, as strong and thoughtful as Merci is, she has never been completely like the other kids at her private school in Florida, because she and her older brother, Roli, are scholarship students. They don’t have a big house or a fancy…


Book cover of While I Was Away

Cathy Carr Author Of 365 Days to Alaska

From my list on families, changes, and challenges.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been a writer a long time and a reader for even longer. But, above all, I’m someone who has always been interested in people. The book universe is filled with fast-moving, plot-driven fiction, but I find myself drawn to stories focused on layered characters and complex relationships. Since I think families are so basic to our experiences as people, I’m always interested in those stories too. What the five books here have in common are big family changes—mostly caused by adults—that challenge the books’ main characters—who are all kids.

Cathy's book list on families, changes, and challenges

Cathy Carr Why did Cathy love this book?

In my experience, a truly unique book is rare, and I’m always excited to find one that stands apart because of premise and setting. Waka is happy in her sixth-grade class in Kansasuntil her parents notice she’s losing her Japanese language skills and decide to take action. They send Waka to Tokyo to spend several months living with her grandmother and attending a local public school. In Japan, Waka struggles with reading and writing kanji, feels awkward around her reserved grandmother, and can’t figure out the social scene at school. Japan may be her parents’ birth country, but in Tokyo, Waka is an outsider. Where is Waka’s real home, and who will she be once she figures that out? An unforgettable memoir with lots of fun 1980s flavor. 

By Waka T. Brown,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked While I Was Away as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

Named one of New York Public Library's Best Books of the Year!

The Farewell meets Erin Entrada Kelly's Blackbird Fly in this empowering middle grade memoir from debut author Waka T. Brown, who takes readers on a journey to 1980s Japan, where she was sent as a child to reconnect to her family's roots.

When twelve-year-old Waka's parents suspect she can't understand the basic Japanese they speak to her, they make a drastic decision to send her to Tokyo to live for several months with her strict grandmother. Forced to say goodbye to her friends and what would have been…


Book cover of Bloom

Summer Rachel Short Author Of The Mutant Mushroom Takeover

From my list on sci-fi books for kids who think they don’t like Sci-Fi.

Why am I passionate about this?

I grew up with a scientist dad who often discussed bits of research or new discoveries around the dinner table. I didn’t follow in his footsteps and get a Ph.D., but I did develop a fascination with scientific happenings, particularly of the weird or unexplained variety. In college, I worked as the science reporter for my university’s newspaper, where I wrote on topics like nanotech tweezers, poultry farm pollution, and the nighttime habits of spiders and snakes. I’m also the author of two science fiction books for young readers.

Summer's book list on sci-fi books for kids who think they don’t like Sci-Fi

Summer Rachel Short Why did Summer love this book?

I’m a sucker for a good alien invasion story. Add in some weird extraterrestrial plants taking over the world and I’m hooked!

It all began with the rain. Then, the strange seeds spread. Bit by bit, deadly plants cropped up everywhere. These things are no joke—I’m talking about man-eating varieties that release deadly pollen and have tentacles that won’t let go. The only people who might be able to fight back are a group of kids with unexplained abilities.

I loved how fast-paced and smart this book was. I also found it delightfully creepy! 

By Kenneth Oppel,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Bloom as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 10, 11, 12, and 13.

What is this book about?

"The perfect book right now for young readers searching for hope, strength, inspiration — and just a little horticultural havoc."—New York Times
 
The first book in a can't-put-it-down, can't-read-it-fast-enough action-thriller trilogy that's part Hatchet, part Alien!

The invasion begins--but not as you'd expect. It begins with rain. Rain that carries seeds. Seeds that sprout--overnight, everywhere. These new plants take over crop fields, twine up houses, and burrow below streets. They bloom--and release toxic pollens. They bloom--and form Venus flytrap-like pods that swallow animals and people. They bloom--everywhere, unstoppable.

Or are they? Three kids on a remote island seem immune to…


Book cover of Time Enough For Love

Thomas T. Thomas Author Of The House at the Crossroads

From my list on with unusual ways to travel in time.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have been interested in time travel since childhood, although I personally do not think human beings will ever move forward or backward in time. But the notion and its paradoxes make a great subject for the imagination, which is the meat of speculative fiction. In writing about time travel, I had to deal with the “grandfather paradox,” where something the character does in the past changes his own future—the core of Ray Bradbury’s short story “The Sound of Thunder.” My excuse, used in The Children of Possibility, is that great upheavals like war and civilizational collapse erase small changes like stepping on a butterfly. But, you know, it’s all speculative.

Thomas' book list on with unusual ways to travel in time

Thomas T. Thomas Why did Thomas love this book?

Heinlein is a master of science fiction. This book is only incidentally—but also irrevocably—about time travel. The life of Lazarus Long, who appears in other works by Heinlein, inspired me to write about longevity in my two-volume novel. Heinlein’s story of adorable Dora will bring tears to your eyes, and it shows how immortality can be a curse if you dare to love someone. Heinlein shares a lot of common sense, too, in the incorporated Notebooks of Lazarus Long.

By Robert A. Heinlein,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Time Enough For Love as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The capstone and crowning achievement of  the Future History series, from the New York Times bestselling Grand Master of Science Fiction...

Time Enough for Love follows Lazarus Long through a vast and magnificent timescape of centuries and worlds. Heinlein's longest and most ambitious work, it is the story of a man so in love with Life that he refused to stop living it; and so in love with Time that he became his own ancestor.


Book cover of Gilbert Goldfish Wants a Pet

Kelly Bennett Author Of Not Norman: A Goldfish Story

From my list on “finny” picture books about fish.

Why am I passionate about this?

I love fish—to look at and read about—not to eat! Fish are unlike other pets. You can’t hold them, or pet them, and you certainly can’t “play” with them the way you can other pets. But for some reason, just looking at them makes me laugh. And because fish don’t say much besides “glug” (although some kinds sing and grunt) we need to imagine what they are thinking and feeling which makes for funny and surprising stories. And, yes, I have pet goldfish: an orange one, Norman, and a black fantail named Knot. 

Kelly's book list on “finny” picture books about fish

Kelly Bennett Why did Kelly love this book?

Do you ever wondering if your pet might want a pet? Gilbert is a goldfish who absolutely does. So, when pet candidates begin showing up, Gilbert’s “fishy little heart” pitter-patter-swishes delightedly. But the dog was too barky-bark, the sniffy mouse was rude and the fly…went splat! Gilbert had all but given up when what seems to be the purrfect pet comes sniffing around—looking very hungry! Bold bright cheerful art and language make this a must read-aloud! 

By Kelly DiPucchio, Bob Shea (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Gilbert Goldfish Wants a Pet as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 3, 4, and 5.

What is this book about?

Gilbert has almost everything his fishy heart could desire: a castle, a chest filled with treasure, and food that falls from the sky. But there's one BIG thing missing from his life: a pet. And so begins Gilbert's harrowing search for the perfect fishbowl companion - a search filled with loud barking, quiet buzzing, and one giant whiskered surprise!

With snappy, rhythmic text and the most irresistible goldfish in picture book history, this tale of fish woe and triumph will make readers long for a pet as lovable as Gilbert.

Watch a Video


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in immortality, New York City, and presidential biography?

11,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about immortality, New York City, and presidential biography.

Immortality Explore 45 books about immortality
New York City Explore 1,080 books about New York City
Presidential Biography Explore 19 books about presidential biography