Interest LevelReading LevelReading A-ZATOSWord Count
Grades 4 - 8Grades 3 - 8X5.662677
A New York Times Bestseller. An AMAZON Best Book of the Year 2013. A Kids' Indie Next List Top Ten Book-- #4, Best Books of Autumn 2013. B.E.A. Buzz Book Award 2013. A Texas Bluebonnet Award Nominee 2014-2015 Master List. A School Library Journal Best Book of the Year. An E.B. White Read Aloud Honor Book. A Dorothy Canfield Fisher Children's Book Award Nominee. A National Public Radio Best Book of the Year.

In the tradition of Out of My Mind, Wonder, and Mockingbird, this is an intensely moving middle grade novel about being an outsider, coping with loss, and discovering the true meaning of family.


Willow Chance is a twelve-year-old genius, obsessed with nature and diagnosing medical conditions, who finds it comforting to count by 7s. It has never been easy for her to connect with anyone other than her adoptive parents, but that hasn't kept her from leading a quietly happy life . . . until now.

Suddenly Willow's world is tragically changed when her parents both die in a car crash, leaving her alone in a baffling world. The triumph of this book is that it is not a tragedy. This extraordinarily odd, but extraordinarily endearing, girl manages to push through her grief. Her journey to find a fascinatingly diverse and fully believable surrogate family is a joy and a revelation to read.


"In achingly beautiful prose, Holly Goldberg Sloan has written a delightful tale of transformation that's a celebration of life in all its wondrous, hilarious and confounding glory. Counting by 7s is a triumph."--Maria Semple, author of Where'd You Go, Bernadette

"Holly Goldberg Sloan writes about belonging in a way I've never quite seen in any other book. This is a gorgeous, funny, and heartwarming novel that I'll never forget."--John Corey Whaley, author of Where Things Come Back

"Willow Chance subtly drew me into her head and her life, so much so that I was holding my breath for her by the end. Holly Goldberg Sloan has created distinct characters who will stay with you long after you finish the book."--Sharon Creech, Newbery Award-winning author of Walk Two Moons



Paperback, 416 pages
Published on September 16, 2014 by Puffin Books
ISBN-10: 014242286X
ISBN-13: 9780142422861
123 Book Reviews
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  • kenziegirl2008
    kenziegirl2008Sunday, December 9, 2018 at 6:42 pm55 stars
    I LOVE this book, my grandma told me about it and I just had to start reading. I actually decided to use this book for my school book report!!
    • galaith
      galaithThursday, December 6, 2018 at 10:01 am55 stars
      Publish Date:2014 Author:Holly Goldberg Sloan Counting By 7s Counting by 7s is a book about a smart girl named Willow. Her parents die in a car crash,so Willow has to find someone new to live with. She has no other relatives so she has to live with her friend Mai and Mai’s brother Quang-Ha. Later in the story, Willow fixes up and paints an apartment, and she makes a garden. I recommend this book to 8 to 14 year olds boys and girls. The reading level is 3rd through 8th grade. I liked this book because it felt like I was in the book along the journey with Willow.
      • frecklefacec
        frecklefacecTuesday, December 4, 2018 at 8:09 am44 stars
        this book is good and sad i didnt finish it but it really is sad
        • hellokitty83105
          hellokitty83105Sunday, December 2, 2018 at 6:29 pm55 stars
          I just read this book and it was amazing. I cried sad tears over her parents and happy tears over her accomplishments and growth. I would recommend this book for those coping with loss of loved ones because just as Willow grew at the end of the book,I did too.
          • raven4life
            raven4lifeTuesday, October 30, 2018 at 5:25 pm55 stars
            This is an amazing book that really is life changing.(If you liked this book you should also read ''out of my mind'').
            • dorks_r_us
              dorks_r_usSaturday, July 14, 2018 at 3:14 pm44 stars
              Sad and Happy mixed in one book. The first time I saw this book I thought it taught you how to count by sevens.
              • ashley57
                ashley57Tuesday, July 3, 2018 at 1:31 pm
                I'm choosing books for my new fifth grade class which will promote critical thinking around social issues as well as having them think about choices they make in identifying who they are, what they will want their character to become. In a world of bullying, put downs from the top of our government, being the "tough guy" ...I want to instill in the children a sense of personal power that they can choose to be whoever and whatever they want to be without stepping on others to lift themselves higher... I'm hoping to find a journey for them through the characters in Fish in a Tree!
                • soso17970
                  soso17970Thursday, May 24, 2018 at 7:02 pm55 stars
                  Such a great book! It is sad how she loses her family, yet interesting how she recovers. It is amazing how such minor characters such as that taxi driver become so close to her. Willow is such a love able character and i highly recommended this book.
                  • grinch45
                    grinch45Thursday, February 15, 2018 at 6:19 pm44 stars
                    I love how there i a lot of twist and turns along the path of her life. You also get hocked like always I think it just break your heart in the end recuse your so happy. I love her personality. One thing in common is...... BOOKS! I love BOOKS and she love BOOKS. Check mark score: hap pines, exploding of happiness, and a 100 happiness.
                    • meTuesday, January 30, 2018 at 4:09 pm
                      i am in the middle of reading it, it great so far, it truly gives truth to wit it is like being an outsider

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