Interest LevelReading LevelReading A-ZATOSWord Count
Grades 4 - 8Grades 2 - 12Z4.125209
Believe in the possible . . . with this "warm, witty, and wise" New York Times bestselling novel from three-time Newbery Honor winner Jennifer L. Holm. A perfect Father's Day read about a child's relationship with her grandfather!

Galileo. Newton. Salk. Oppenheimer.
Science can change the world . . . but can it go too far?

Eleven-year-old Ellie has never liked change. She misses fifth grade. She misses her old best friend. She even misses her dearly departed goldfish. Then one day a strange boy shows up. He’s bossy. He’s cranky. And weirdly enough . . . he looks a lot like Ellie’s grandfather, a scientist who’s always been slightly obsessed with immortality. Could this pimply boy really be Grandpa Melvin? Has he finally found the secret to eternal youth?

With a lighthearted touch and plenty of humor, Jennifer Holm celebrates the wonder of science and explores fascinating questions about life and death, family and friendship, immortality . . . and possibility.

"Warm, witty and wise"—The New York Times

"Awesomely strange and startlingly true-to-life. It makes you wonder what's possible." -- Rebecca Stead, Newbery Medal-winning author of When You Reach Me


Hardcover, 208 pages
Published on August 26, 2014 by Random House Books for Young Readers
ISBN-10: 0375870644
ISBN-13: 9780375870644
104 Book Reviews
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  • h_v2009
    h_v2009Thursday, February 27, 2020 at 5:10 pm55 stars
    This was a very amazing book. It explains that anything is possible if you just believe in yourself and that family is always around. I had to read this book for a club and I really enjoyed it. I hope you enjoy it too!!
    • gianna632
      gianna632Wednesday, January 15, 2020 at 11:21 am44 stars
      I gave this book a 4-star rating because it wasn't the best book I've read but definitely a good one. It is about an 11-year old girl named Ellie Cruz. One day, a strange man, comes up to her door and acts strangely like her grandfather. It turns out he is! Her 77-year old grandpa is a teenager! How did this happen? Why is he here? You'll have to read the book to find out! I connect to this book because we both had multiple fish that died, but our parents didn't tell us until later.
      • inmemoryofcpr
        inmemoryofcprWednesday, May 22, 2019 at 4:35 pm44 stars
        How would you feel if your grandfather suddenly appeared on your house's front porch? How would you feel if he showed up as a teenager? Well that was exactly what happened to Ellie Cruz. Her grandfather, Melvin, must get back his jellyfish, T. Melvius, which is the Fountain of Youth. But as Ellie realizes what the jellyfish might do, she and Melvin must decide whether to become famous for this discovery, or to prevent a disaster from happening.
        • zzayumi
          zzayumiTuesday, May 21, 2019 at 3:46 am55 stars
          This book is very good! It would be very surprising if your grandpa turns into the same age as you, but in the book, it happened!
          • unicornboi22
            unicornboi22Friday, February 15, 2019 at 10:18 am55 stars
            I LOVE THIS BOOK
            • tcwgaming
              tcwgamingThursday, November 15, 2018 at 11:56 am55 stars
              This is one of the wackiest books ive ever read! so funny and clever! I'm so excited to read the next book "The Third Mushroom!
              • chlooe
                chlooeFriday, November 16, 2018 at 3:11 pm
                Do you think I should read this book? A lot of people talk about this book so I'm wondering if you could give me a brief book summary?
                • auntieb
                  auntiebSunday, November 18, 2018 at 11:29 am55 stars
                  You can read mine it is on page 3. :)
                  • auntieb
                    auntiebSunday, November 18, 2018 at 11:30 am55 stars
                    And yes. This book is very good - there is a sequel too! The Third Mushroom.
              • applemango
                applemangoWednesday, September 12, 2018 at 6:23 pm55 stars
                Her grandfather walks into the door but, he is a boy! HE has created a special "thing" that makes him imortal!!!
                • readytoread
                  readytoreadWednesday, August 29, 2018 at 3:06 pm44 stars
                  In this book, Ellie's grandfather found a way to make himself young again. He is now 13 and lives with Ellie and her mom. However, her grandfather has many complaints. In this book, Ellie makes friends with a boy name Raj, while discovery the answers to lots for her questions, using science, and realizing the world is not reading for some things, and there is a difference between a discovery that is for the good and a discovery that destroys. She also discovers who her 14th goldfish- an example of her lifestyle is. This book is very well written and every part is interesting.
                  • bobelly
                    bobellyWednesday, August 22, 2018 at 2:39 pm55 stars
                    This book was very, very funny. It talked a lot about Chinese food and it was about a girl named Ellie whose Grandpa desperately wants to find the key to eternal life because he is very sad about his wife Mona who died. This book has a lot of friendship, heart and family. In the end, everyone will like it.
                    • jwarne
                      jwarneMonday, August 6, 2018 at 1:49 pm55 stars
                      This book was really cool. I like all of the science stuff. I thought it was really funny, too, and really liked Ellie's grandfather Melvin. Especially when he was a kid. He was so funny.