Interest LevelReading LevelReading A-ZATOSWord Count
Grades 4 - 8Grades 2 - 8W3.748814
A New York Times Bestseller!

The author of the beloved One for the Murphys gives readers an emotionally-charged, uplifting novel that will speak to anyone who’s ever thought there was something wrong with them because they didn’t fit in.

“Everybody is smart in different ways. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its life believing it is stupid.”

Ally has been smart enough to fool a lot of smart people. Every time she lands in a new school, she is able to hide her inability to read by creating clever yet disruptive distractions. She is afraid to ask for help; after all, how can you cure dumb? However, her newest teacher Mr. Daniels sees the bright, creative kid underneath the trouble maker. With his help, Ally learns not to be so hard on herself and that dyslexia is nothing to be ashamed of. As her confidence grows, Ally feels free to be herself and the world starts opening up with possibilities. She discovers that there’s a lot more to her—and to everyone—than a label, and that great minds don’t always think alike.
Paperback, 320 pages
Published on March 28, 2017 by Puffin Books
ISBN-10: 0142426423
ISBN-13: 9780142426425
141 Book Reviews
  • andrew95
    andrew95Sunday, June 20, 2021 at 7:54 pm44 stars
    Fish in a Tree is a great way to inform people about the disorder of dyslexia. A great choice for a project or to have some fun with students. One chapter from my teacher made the whole class silent. But I do think that leaving fans on a cliffhanger is not really good because we want to know how Ally's brother Travis does in the book it is debatable. Am just giving my own opinions and criticism please don't come at me because I dislike the book a little.
    • kawaiicutie
      kawaiicutieFriday, June 4, 2021 at 2:26 pm55 stars
      like it
      • kawaiicutie
        kawaiicutieFriday, June 4, 2021 at 2:26 pm55 stars
        i liked this it is good for ages 9-13 i think kk :)
        • kittylover111
          kittylover111Sunday, May 30, 2021 at 1:20 pm55 stars
          This book teaches you about dyslexia. Dyslexia is when someone, in this case Ally Nickerson, has trouble reading, because the letters are backwards and than you can't see what the word is. Mr. Daniels, Ally's teacher, teaches her how to read. But before that, Ally's old teacher, Mrs. Hall, didn't know. Shay, Jessica and other kids make fun of Ally because of her trouble and disadvantage. But when Mr. Daniel's comes, that smile wipes off of Shay's face! He is on Ally's side, slowly understanding her problem. Ally also makes new friends, Kiesha Almond, a black girl that loves to bake. And Albert, a super smart brainy kid. All learns that when it becomes Impossible, make it Im possible.
          • mireeka
            mireekaSaturday, May 29, 2021 at 2:41 pm33 stars
            I don't dislike this book, but I do dislike the theme of this book. I am tired of books where the message is "Being different is good". I don't disagree with that, but can't somebody think of a better theme for people who are different in some way? Besides, one reason I don't like this theme is that these kinds of books always make me cry.
            • limechu
              limechuTuesday, May 25, 2021 at 4:52 pm55 starsFeatured
              (this review is also in a book report I wrote so if my teacher sees this hi) So many factors in this book make it 5/5. One factor is the way the author expresses the theme of “just because you have a flaw doesn’t mean you’re just defined by that flaw.” Throughout the book, our protagonist Ally, with the help of her teacher Mr. Davids, uncover that Ally is so much more than her dyslexia. She’s funny, intelligent, and a talented artist. She’s more than the bullies think of her. The bullying in this book is also very well-written and realistic. The main bully, Shay, hurts Ally with her words, and shapes Ally’s view of herself. In chapter 29, Shay draws Ally with a dunce’s cap. She is scolded and made to erase it, but not before Ally can see it. When Ally sees it, she agrees. It’s sad, but realistic. A lot of people’s views of themselves are shaped by others, leading to low self esteem. The last reason I’d rate this book 5/5 is because of its ending. There’s no easy ending that makes everything perfect, Ally can’t magically read, but that’s fine. Ally finds a way of learning with her teacher that works for her. She knows its going to take effort to learn to read, but she can see her own improvement. In real life, there is no perfect ending, all we can do is realize that and try to make our ending as happy as we can. We can’t fix everything, but we can try. We can dream of a happy ending, “But these mind movies won’t go into my sketchbook of impossible things, because I know they will actually happen.”
              • kittylover111
                kittylover111Friday, June 4, 2021 at 2:21 pm55 stars
                Great review! I see why you go the editors pick!
              • lisssssy
                lisssssySaturday, May 15, 2021 at 4:09 pm55 stars
                I LOVED THIS BOOK!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I literally couldn’t put it down even got to the point for my grandma (Who is obsessed with reading) told me to put it down. it felt so interesting! I was screaming at the characters and I finished it in a day
                • skyfly49
                  skyfly49Wednesday, March 10, 2021 at 5:20 pm44 stars
                  I love this book because it embraces learning differences. Some things might be harder for others, and that's okay. Lynda Mullaly Hunt really captures this amazing idea in this novel.
                  • thesmessywriter
                    thesmessywriterWednesday, February 10, 2021 at 10:39 am55 stars
                    i can really relate to this book. a MUST read
                    • sreadergirl
                      sreadergirlThursday, October 15, 2020 at 12:07 pm44 stars
                      This is pretty good but there's a lot of negativity. It's pretty sad too. But it is pretty good.