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Fish Fish

3.74  ·  Rating Details ·  565 Ratings  ·  95 Reviews
"My story starts the day that my parents told me we must leave our adopted home forever. Because of the soldiers and the drought we barely had enough to eat and we could no longer stay to help the peoplein our village.
Right before we were leaving I saw a fish in a small brown puddle and I knew I had to take it with me. The journey would be hard to get across the mountains
ebook, 192 pages
Published January 21st 2009 by Yearling Books (first published September 1st 2003)
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Asia young
The book Fish by L.S Matthews was appealing to me, I did like the book because it showed that we still have people with hearts and humanity. The main character is a little kid name Tiger who is a worker in a war in the country .after they have to leave their country Tiger finds a helpless almost fatal fish, who he takes with him on their journey and is determine to save. I love how the child goes so far by even putting the fish in his mouth to save him. This book shows that one person can change ...more
The book I read was Fish by: L. S. Matthews
The book starts off with a small boy finding a fish; this fish is an important symbol throughout the book. A boy and his parents leave their country. The reason they have to leave their country is because it is doing well and they need to help others in another country. Once they are in this new country they see people dying because there is not enough medicine, food, water, etc… The family has to move into a different country because the war is coming

Recommended for J510 at Chase Academy

A fairly simple read in terms vocabulary, sentence complexity, and plot, but definitely enough to talk about, especially the parallel between the fish's survival and the protagonist's journey.

I think it'd also be interesting to talk about the author's choice of avoiding specifics (e.g., the protagonist's gender or the non-specific setting).
Joy Kirr
Apr 12, 2015 Joy Kirr rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book, in its simplicity, is also very deep. There are metaphors upon metaphors - I know I didn't get many of them! The inside flap says ages 10 and up. I want to ask my niece and nephew (who are 9) to read it and let me know what they think! I'll bet they get something out of it I did not!
Sep 03, 2015 Josh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fish
A great book that involves a simple fish that means the world to the main character, Tiger.
Oct 16, 2015 Traishuan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
loveit good book
Hannah Givens
A remarkable little children's book about a refugee family. Their child, Tiger, saves a fish and takes it with him across the border. The author never says what country the family is from originally (they're aid workers), or what country they're in or going to, or Tiger's gender or real name (which all holds up in the audiobook). You hardly even notice, and it makes the book seem (tragically) timeless. It's gripping and sad and slightly horrifying, but in the way many children's historical books ...more
Oct 11, 2011 Chris rated it really liked it
From School Library Journal
Grade 4-8–Tiger's Mum and Dad are aid workers in a remote unnamed country that has been devastated by drought, flooded by rains, and besieged by political conflict. The villagers have fled across a neighboring country's border as war looms. Tiger has just rescued a fish from an evaporating pond-turned-puddle on the morning that his family and their Guide are preparing to evacuate. So begins a staggering journey of indomitable odds across a hostile land. The simple inno
Jan 02, 2012 Johnny rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011-2012
THIS BOOK WAS AWESOME! I loved this book. It was very interesting and right on pace. It didn't go off track into unimportant stories. It was about a girl named Tiger who is living in a poor country because her parents are humanitarians who help people in need from poor countries. When the country they help is under attack by rebels they have to leave and return to their own original country. They have to travel a long way to get to the border but find out that people cannot cross the border beca ...more
Sep 13, 2009 Michele rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thanks, Kate, for this wonderful recommendation. A beautiful book. Well done. This is one of the best books I have read in quite a while. Not recommended for children under the age of nine. There is death and suffering involved, but if you want to introduce your children to what people in undeveloped countries experience, and if you want to talk about sacrifice and hope, this is, as I said, a beautiful book.

The story unfolds from the unique perspective of young girl whose age we do not know and
Michele Velthuizen
Interest level: 5th +
Reading level: easy, short book
Genre: Realistic fiction, war, refugees

"Fish" is an excellent short read about a child called Tiger and his/her (the author never specifies whether the child is a boy or girl) parents who have to flee a war-torn country when life becomes unbearable and they can no longer help the local population as aid workers. They leave their home with a wise local guide (who lost his entire family during the war) and his trustworthy donkey. On the day they
Jun 07, 2010 Linda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is an intriguing little book. Told by a child of indeterminate age and unspecified gender, it is the story of parents and child who are (likely British) aid workers in a third-world country, who must flee for their lives from the civil unrest and outright warfare.
The child, nicknamed "Tiger", finds a fish in a puddle, in a country that has been also plagued by drought. Rescuing the fish and putting it into a bottle, the fish is taken by the child on the hazardous journey to freedom.
As I re
Apr 14, 2008 AbigailK rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone
This book is more for middle schoolers but I still love it. It's about this kid whose parents are missionaries in this country thats been devastated by war. Their the last ones to leave the town, because they had to get everyone out first, and the borders closed. This guide with a donkey has the job of helping them get back to their country. Since the border is closed they have to go through this mountain pass. But wait I've gone too far. So when the kid's waiting for his parents to finsh packin ...more
Carly Wesley
Apr 22, 2014 Carly Wesley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fish in the story of a child named Tiger who is a child of humanitarian workers, they live in famine and war country. The government asked them to leave the country the family must make a journey across the mountains to get back home. Tiger rescues a fish that is dyeing in a mud puddle right before they are about to take their journey across the mountains. The family can only take what they can carry on their backs, but Tiger choose to take the fish with him since the fish will die. As the famil ...more
Yu Ting Zhu
The book Fish uses a special way to tells people how tenacious life is. The main character Tiger (the author never specifies Tiger is a girl or boy) and the family decide to flee form their town because of the war. The day they need to leave, Tiger finds a little fish in the pond. The rain brought the little fish from the river to the pond, but when the sun appears, the water of pond becomes less and less. Tiger just saved this little fish, and take it with (him) in the hard journey.
Although the
Dec 05, 2012 M. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Tiger's parents are aid workers in an unspecicified country. When the war in that country comes close to their village, they and their guide must leave on foot to get to the border of a neighboring country. Right before they leave, Tiger finds a fish in a pond drying to a puddle. S/he (gender unspecified) rescues the fish, ties it to the guide's donkey, and makes sure it's cared for all the way to the border. Along the way the family, guide, and the guide's donkey encounter various difficulties- ...more
Fish is a story about a family of aid workers trying to escape a war-torn country. Tiger, the main character, finds a fish; one of the only real living things left in the village and decides to take it on the journey to his country. Most of the people in the village have died and the family must evacuate before the war comes to them.

Matthews never gives a nationality to Tiger's family, but through the language and context clues; I would guess they are British. The country the family is escaping
Mar 21, 2013 Melissa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I don't know why I thought that this would be a light hearted read about a journey involving a fish. It was so much better than I expected; it was a very real, harrowing journey of survival. Set in an unknown country during a time of war, Tiger and his/her parents are missionary’s who must make their way to safety across the border. Taking only what they can carry, they make their journey with a guide, his donkey and a small fish kept in a pot with a lid in Tiger's backpack. A trek to the border ...more
Pam P
I read this as it was one of the Global Read Aloud selections and I never got to it. Very interesting story about a family of aid workers fleeing a war-torn country. The country is never named nor is the country the workers came from. There is some inferring you can do to narrow down the setting. I know the author wanted the focus on the family, the issues war creates, and the selflessness of the guide but I kept going back to "where & when" the story was taking place. (It reminded me of how ...more
Chapter Seven.

The main character seems like a boy to me! I think because of the nickname Tiger. And his/her actions. OH WELLS! (Helen thinks he/she is a girl...) Helen do you think EVERYBODY you don't know the real gender of, is a GIRL? Haha different for me! I usually think they are boys... wow. Remember Desertwind? You thought it was a girl when I was thinking boy. Hehehe xP

Alot of walking, I somehow managed to enjoy it... though not really recommended... depending on what kind of person you a
Apr 20, 2015 Lisa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
I really liked this book. It's a story of survival and resilience, hope, and perseverance and there is a lot of symbolism in the book. I read it because it's the Global Read Aloud book and we are participating in that project. The book is written simply, but has deeper layers within that will promote great discussion. I think it's a good choice for the Global Read Aloud because it promotes a lot of higher level thinking. Good for girls and boys (don't even know if main character is a girl or boy ...more
Jan 24, 2016 Lynda rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: junior-fiction
A boy travels with his parents and a guide over mountainous terrain leaving the only country he's ever known. Before he leaves, he finds a fish in a mud puddle and takes it with him.
I think this book was trying to say more in a metaphorical and philosophical way and normally I really like books like this. But I didn't really get much out of this. The characters are interesting, but beyond the boy, you don't get much background or information on them. Also, the setting is not given as a place in
jackie sze
Tiger's parents are aid workers in a foreign country wrecked by war. They had to leave their hometown to a refugee camp due to political problems and war.On the day of the family's departure, Tiger rescues a fish from muddy waters and insists that they take it along. The fish is secured in a jar strapped to Tiger's back and becomes a symbol of hope as the family, along with a guide, makes their long travel to the border. Food and water are low, and they encounter with "fighting mens" which gets ...more
Neill Smith
Aug 04, 2011 Neill Smith rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Tiger's family had come to a small country to help the people but as an invasion from a neighbouring country developed they had to leave. Torrential rains had just flowed through the drought-plagued land leaving seas of mud. Unfortunately the borders were closed so their only recourse was to cross a mountain lead by a guide and a donkey. Just prior to leaving Tiger finds a fish in a mudhole and he plans to save it by taking it with them in a water pot. Rebel soldiers, lack of food, treacherous p ...more
Kate Hastings
Aug 08, 2009 Kate Hastings rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Grades 4-7, refugees, survival, realistic fiction
RL 980. Tiger, the child of foreign aid workers, has lived most of her life with her parents in a village helping refugees. Then the war threatens the peace in their already impoverished village, and her parents stay to help as many people as they can. By the time they are able to leave, the nearest border is closed-- and the family is forced to take a treacherous trek through arid mountains with only a donkey and a local guide. Throughout, Tiger is determined to keep a small fish alive that she ...more
Mar 15, 2010 Gem rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read2010, kidsbooks
The reason I gave this book 4 out of 5 stars is that I don't think the writing particularly makes this a book of "excellence," but L.S. Matthews talks about how she writes books that effect change, and I think this book does have the potential to effect change.

I recommended this book often when I worked at a children's bookstore to teachers and librarians. I think it's a great novel for group study like literature circles or book clubs. It's great for younger readers because the story is simple,
Apr 12, 2009 Yoke rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The book "Fish" starts off when a boy hears his parents say, "We have to leave our village because of a huge mudslide, and a war that is spreading towards our village." So off they went across the border, but on the way out of the house he saw a fish. The fish was stuck in a muddy lake because of the mudslide, so the boy asked his parents if he could take the fish with them across the border. His parents replied, "Yes." So he caught the fish, but he really didn't take the time to think about all ...more
Jun 15, 2015 Kari rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What an interesting book this book was. It was about a missionary family, however it wasn't specifically identified as to what country they were from or what country they were in. To me this was the best part of the book because it didn't focus on the history of the country, but instead it was about the journey the family had to make, along with fish, a small fish saved from a muddy, drying up pond.
I read this cause it looked like a book my ESL kiddos would have loved...still not sure though. It is a kid in an unnamed war-torn country running with her Peace-corps-ish family (again, unspecified country) - a generality that I think a lot of kids could relate to. There is action here and there, but mostly just a lot of just walking - I think that the reluctant readers that I had originally spotted it for would likely get bored before they got to any good parts.
Sep 18, 2015 Paula rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Beautifully written story about a boy and his relief worker parents who must flee a war-torn nation. The boy finds a fish struggling to survive in a drying up puddle and takes it along on their treacherous journey. Some sections may be hard for younger readers to grasp. War can be brutal and the things this boy witnesses can be difficult to comprehend. L.S. Matthews tells the story with an edge of surrealism as well as authentic realism for the plight of refugees.
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L. S. Matthews (born August 29, 1964) is the pen name of Laura Dron, a British children's author of several critically acclaimed novels.

She was born near Dudley in the West Midlands in England, youngest of five children of parents from the South West who had moved to the industrial area for work. She attended state school there, leaving at 18 to study English Literature at Goldsmiths College, Univ
More about L.S. Matthews...

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