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Goldfish Boy

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Goldfish Boy Reviews | Toppsta

Book Rating: 5 based on 26
26 Reviews
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A story about finding friendship when you're lonely - and hope when
all you feel is fear.
Twelve-year-old Matthew is trapped in his bedroom by crippling OCD,
spending most of his time staring out of his window as the inhabitants
of Chestnut Close go about their business. Until the day
he is the last person to see his next door neighbour's toddler,
Teddy, before he goes missing. Matthew must turn detective and unravel
the mystery of Teddy's disappearance - with the help of a brilliant
cast of supporting characters.

Page-turning, heartbreaking, but ultimately life-affirming, this
story is perfect for fans of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the
Night Time and Wonder. It is a book that will make you laugh and
cry.

Goldfish Boy Reviews | Toppsta

9781407170992
  • ISBN: 9781407170992
  • Pub Date: 5th January 2017
  • Publisher: Scholastic
  • Imprint: Scholastic
  • Format: Paperback
  • Number of Pages: 400

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31st May '17
Robert2007 read it themselves aged 9 aged 9
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
I liked everything about this book. Thoroughly gripping, you can't put this book down. I'd recommend it to my friends
3rd October '17
Sea Turtle read it themselves aged 10 to 11
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
Libby Age 10

I really enjoyed this book because it was mysterious and the first page made me want to read the whole book at once. 
13th May '18
I read it myself (an adult)
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
Fiction can play a massive role in supporting readers through real life experiences and this book does exactly that.  OCD can be a debilitating condition and this book describes Matthew’s struggles so well.   The mystery element of the book is intriguing and weaves through Matthew’s problems really cleverly. I also loved the depth of character in his friends - this is a great book and I can’t imagine many 10 or 11 year olds not loving it. 
30th August '17
SassyJ read it themselves aged 11 aged 11
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
This book is genuinely captivating with a slight tinge of mystery. I loved this book as the characters were so well described they seemed real  also I felt sorry for Mathew as he was suspected of a terrible thing. 
14th February '18
I read it myself (an adult)
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
A great book with storylines that weave together well. The characters are interesting but not too complex so that you can easily follow the plot. There is a great mystery holding the story together, but you can't help to feel for the main character, Matthew.
21st February '17
I read it to Millie53 aged 7 aged 7
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
5* all around for this book, 
It was so captivating from start to finish ... I don't want to give to much away as you must read it. 
I couldn't put the book down after I read each chapter a night to my daughter I then took it and read more and more. 
The author has done a brilliant job. 
HIGHLY recommend 
7th September '17
beanstalk children read it themselves aged 5 to 11
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
The book is about a boy who has OCD which makes him scared of germs.  When a toddler next door goes missing, Matthew (the boy with OCD) takes it upon himself to find the toddler.
The main characters are Matthew who has OCD and Melody who helps Matthew find out what happens.
My favourite character is Matthew because you can see how he struggles with OCD.
I liked the book a lot but would recommend it to people over 10 because it has quite a creepy plot and some children may not like it.
1st February '17
Rosie2336 read it themselves aged 11 aged 11
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
This book is a very good read. Every night I couldn't wait to pick this book up to read. The story is brilliant. 

Matthew spent a lot of time in his bedroom, people watching out of his bedroom window. Matthew has OCD and suffers with a nicety, he doesn't like germs and cleans his bedroom to keep germs away and wears latex gloves. Matthew likes clean surfaces and feels safe in his bedroom away from germs. 
Matthew likes to people watch out of his bedroom and office window making notes in his book about everyday life that goes on in the cul-de-sac he lives in.
Teddy the little boy next door goes missing. Teddy and his sister Casey are staying with their Grandad while their mum is away with work. The police are called and everybody in the close goes looking for him except Matty who can't leave the house. 

I am so glad the ending is a happy ending. 

A brilliant read!
22nd February '17
birchbear read it themselves aged 8 aged 8
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
I found it a bit boring at the start but after a while I started to really like it. It's a really good book if you like mystery stories and I would recommend it to people age 7+.
7th August '18
I read it myself (an adult)
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
I read this book in two sittings as I was so hooked - and only two as I was told it was time to turn the light out!

The story shares the main character's (Matthew's) experience with OCD and how it becomes a struggle for him to leave the house, communicate with anyone, including his family, and to deal with being outside of his 'safe bubble' (his Goldfish tank). Matthew's OCD encourages him to record the comings and goings of the neighbours and when his neighbour looks after his grandchildren, Matthew becomes part of the investigation to find on of the children, following their disappearance. I was pleased that the book ended with Matthew beginning the long road to recovery. 
2nd February '19
I read it myself (an adult)
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
A children's book with some grown up issues. The main character is given the nickname Goldfish boy by a girl next door as he spends his day looking out of his window. He fears going outside or even out of his room in case he gets any germs but some times he needs to go outside to find out what happened. This is a good read and one that I could not put down. I found the ending very emotional and would advise that only mature children older than 9 would read this. Children may need to discuss the issues in this book with an adult as, although this is a children's book, it covers sensitive trauma issues relating to obsessive compulsive disorder, kidnapping and infant death. 
16th January '18
Bobbin read it themselves aged 10 aged 10
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
This book was recommended to my son, and he absolutely loved it!  We read bits together, but mainly he read it to himself each night - a sure sign of a great book!

The story is about a boy with OCD, who is somewhat forced to interact with others perhaps more than he wishes when he becomes the last person to see a toddler before he disappears.  Matthew turns detective, and with the help of one of his school friends who also lives on the same road he begins to unravel the mystery.

My son loves this kind of detective book, and the book is great at helping to understand OCD and the difficulties that other children face.

If you liked this, then I would also recommend 'The London Eye Mystery' which is also about an autistic boy who finds himself in the centre of a mystery about a missing child.

We were fortunate that just as my son finished this book, the author published her second book - and my son is now very happily making his way through that now!
13th March '17
I read it to Phoebe08 aged 9 aged 9
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
This book was really interesting to read . It is about a boy who has problems controlling his cleaning habits after his baby brother died. The story is based on his neighbours grandson who goes missing and how the 3 children in the road come together with problems of their own and try to solve the mystery.
I haven't heard to OCD before but found it interesting to here about other children's lives. I enjoyed the story and liked the ending. Thought the characters were really believable. 
5th January '17
I read it myself (an adult)
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
A moving and honest debut novel about a young boy with severe Obsessive Compulsive Disorder who holds the key to solving the mystery of the disappearance of the toddler staying next door.

Matthew spends his days watching the neighbours from his bedroom window. He makes notes about their daily routines, his only 'friend' a Wallpaper Lion which Matthew can see in the patterns in the wallpaper. I loved this little quirky detail as it reminded me of when I was little and couldn't sleep and would look for patterns and faces in the cracks and indentations in the ceiling tiles.

There are two mystery's running alongside each other: firstly, the mystery of the missing toddler for the characters to solve and secondly, the mystery for the reader to solve as to why Matthew has developed such extreme OCD. Both elements of the story kept me guessing to the end and I liked how both were explained, although not necessarily fully resolved. Matthew's story in particular caused me to shed a little tear!

There are a great cast of characters which causes us to question how well we really know those that live around us. Everyone has a story to tell or a secret to keep and this shows us that it's important not to judge people on face value or on one facet of their personality or appearance. 

I particularly liked the relationship between Matthew and his dad. Whilst his dad clearly loves Matthew, he struggles to understand Matthew's habits as a genuine condition and simply wants him to snap out of it. His anger and frustration bubble over at points but rather than hate the character for this I sympathised with his view. Having suffered personal tragedy he just wants everyone to be happy, keep a smile on their face and get on with things. Typical British stiff-upper lip! 

This is an excellent debut which strikes a good balance between the mystery of the missing toddler and the issues surrounding Matthew's condition. Aimed at the 9-12 age group this is an entertaining and heartfelt read for all readers 9+. Highly recommended.
20th August '17
I read it myself (an adult)
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
As a year 5/6 teacher, I read a lot of novels aimed at children and young adults. This book had me hooked early on, with authentic, believable characters and a great plot.
I was moved to tears by this relatable and wonderful story.

Highly recommended for year 5 and up (including adults!)
10th February '17
I read it myself (an adult) & to Book Club aged 9 to 11
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
Matthew is terrified of germs. They creep over your skin, crawl into your mouth and make you ill. Then you pass them on to other people and they get ill. And that can't happen. So Matthew cleans. He washes himself constantly, and keeps his bedroom spotless, and stays indoors so the germs can't reach him.

To fill his days, he watches the comings and goings in his close, noting down everyday life in his note book. Then, one day, Teddy, his next-door neighbour’s grandson goes missing, and Matthew is the last person to see him. He knows he has to investigate, but how?

A beautiful, brilliantly written story about a lonely, fearful boy, that tugs at your heartstrings and reminds us all  “Don't ever wait for a storm to pass. You've got to go out there and dance in the rain.”

Great for fans of Wonder, The London Eye Mystery and What Not To Do If You Turn Invisible.
12th June '17
I read it myself (an adult)
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
A book that works on so many levels.  The story explores friendship and loneliness and also mental health issues and their causes.  I liked that it gave the reader an insight into what it would feel like to have OCD on a daily basis.  The main premis of the story, about a missing toddler, is a great ‘Who-don-it’ mystery and I found myself suspicious of all of the main characters in turn.  I was actually quite surprized by the ending.   Great story for young people from age 8 up.
15th March '17
I read it to Ollie aged 9 aged 9
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
This book is about a boy with OCD, which develops after the death of his baby brother. Mathew is now afraid of germs and has to keep washing so in his eyes he doesn't kill his family. At the start of the book the reader doesn't know why Matthew has OCD, the story develops after a toddler staying with his grandad next door goes missing. This forces Matthew into contact with other children his age initially by email and then out of his room (his goldfish bowl) to play detective and locate the missing child. 
3rd May '17
Westy10 read it themselves aged 11 aged 11
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
5 stars
I liked this book because it was an intriguing mystery with unique characters.

Favourite character was Melody because she is a passionate character with a weird hobbie.

It was a bit slow to start but got going quickly
21st February '17
TomH read it themselves aged 10 aged 10
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
4 stars
Goldfish Boy by Lisa Thompson

This book is about a boy called Matthew who tries to overcome his OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) whilst solving the mystery of the missing Teddy Dawson. If you were wondering what OCD is it's an urge to do something repeatedly.


The main character in this story is Matthew who has OCD. His type of OCD is his fear of germs and not wanting anyone to catch an illness. He has stopped going to school and instead watches the world go by whist writing notes about the people in his close. Another character is Melody who is just really normal apart from she goes to the graveyard a few times everyday. Matty thinks is strange. These two characters work together to find out what happened to Teddy. 

i enjoyed this book because the plot was believable. Really the OCD adds another layer to the story like when he goes to see the therapist, Dr Rhodes. I felt worried for Matty suffering from his OCD, and that his life must be terrible, not being able to do things that most children his age would do. Before I read the book, I thought that the OCD part was not my kind of book, but it was dealt with very sensitively and I think everyone should read this book because everybody needs to know about these illnesses like OCD and how they effect people's lives.  Also I enjoyed finding out about the troubles of daily life and how getting bullied by Jake Bishop makes it hard for Matt and Melody to fit in. I also learned about other people, that were are not all perfect and some people hide secrets...  

I would recommend this book to people who are in year 6 up (uk). I also recommend this to people who suffer from this illness because they might learn that they are not the only ones with OCD.
15th July '18
XanderPotter read it themselves aged 11 aged 11
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
4 stars
★★★★ 4 and a half stars.

I really enjoyed reading this book and I liked Matthew a lot. He likes things really clean and hates germs and sometimes this can make his mum and dad mad with him. It was really interesting learning about OCD and what this makes people do.

When the little kid from next door gets lost he acts like a detective and follows clues to try and find the missing baby. I really like it when he questions suspects and lists the clues and information. Some of the characters are really funny. I would class this book as a mystery (and I love mysteries!) and think it is a good book for 9-12 year olds. 
12th September '17
Erythemis read it themselves aged 11 aged 11
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
4 stars
The Goldfish Boy tells the story of Matthew, a boy who is rattled by a medical condition called Obsessive Compulsive Disorder; he constantly cleans to prevent lethal illness, after a traumatising experience when he was younger. And when a toddler staying next door disappears mysteriously, Matthew decides to put aside his own problems to crack the mystery.

This novel is utterly heartwarming, giving me an insight into the life of someone with OCD, who finds life uniquely harder than most people. For this I am grateful to be able to connect with the character in the book, as myself, in a different way, am hampered by severe food allergies. We need more books that tells the tales of people with medical conditions, especially mental illness.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed the gripping mystery, and hope to read more books by Lisa Thompson in the future. I highly recommend The Goldfish Boy to children aged nine and above.
28th February '17
I read it to MaxS aged 10 aged 10
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
4 stars
This is a nice unusual mystery story. The main character Matthew suffers from OCD but this is handled is a way that it easy for younger readers to understand. He views life mainly from the confines of his bedroom but what happens when a kid next door goes missing? After a slowish start the storyline starts to grab you. My 10 year old found this a very easy read with no difficult language.  Different and engaging. Recommended. 
2nd June '17
I read it myself aged 10 aged 10
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
4 stars
A heart-felt book about a boy with Obsessive Compulsion Disorder, and when Matthew's neighbour's grandson goes missing, he is onto the case. Spending his days up in his bedroom, Matthew notes down what his neighbours do every day to pass his time, and with his only friend being 'the wallpaper lion' he doesn't go out much either.
Then he makes real friends with a girl called Melody Bird, and they work together to solve the case.

My favourite part is when Matthew is cured of his disorder, because he starts a new, happier life full of friendship.
1st May '17
I read it myself (an adult)
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
4 stars
This is a good book... well-written, funny in parts, well researched and compelling.  As a school librarian, I shall be careful whom I recommend it to.  Parents and staff certainly.  Older children, yes, but with the caveat that it deals (sensitively) with OCD and bereavement, bullying and child abduction.  And there is some swearing.  Nevertheless, Lisa Thompson is now on my list of authors to watch out for.
7th October '17
I read it myself (an adult)
Goldfish Boy 9781407170992
4 stars
A young boy goes missing from his grandfather's garden and Matthew is the last  person who saw him. But Matthew has problems of his own. He suffers from OCD, a condition so debilitating that he hasn't left his home in months, even for school, he can't bear to hug his own mother and the thought of the pet cat being anywhere near him is unbearable. Consequently, Matty has become isolated and lonely, having lost touch with all his friends. However, he is determined to investigate the mystery of missing baby Teddy. 
I really enjoyed this book for many reasons. The cast of characters are varied and interesting, having their own secrets and back stories. The 'whodunnit' element is very well done and mature for a children's book. The theme of mental illness is sensitively and accurately portrayed. The development of the characters' relationships with each other is heart-warming and hopeful. 
I will admit to a lump in the throats at certain times. You have been warned!
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About Lisa Thompson

Lisa Thompson Biography
Lisa Thompson worked as a Radio Broadcast Assistant first at the BBC and then for an independent production company making plays and comedy programmes. During this time she got to make tea for lots of famous people. She grew up in Essex and now lives in Suffolk with her family. Her debut, THE GOLDFISH BOY, was a Waterstones Ch...

More about Lisa Thompson

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