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Holes (A Yearling Book) by Louis Sachar

Holes (A Yearling Book) (original 1998; edition 2000)

by Louis Sachar, Vladimir Radunsky (Illustrator), Bagram Ibatoulline (Illustrator)

Series: Holes (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
14,600674137 (4.07)1 / 299
Title:Holes (A Yearling Book)
Authors:Louis Sachar
Other authors:Vladimir Radunsky (Illustrator), Bagram Ibatoulline (Illustrator)
Info:Dell Yearling (2000), Paperback, 272 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:Newberry, Discipline, Family

Work details

Holes by Louis Sachar (1998)

  1. 20
    Al Capone Does My Shirts by Gennifer Choldenko (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: With offbeat characters and distinctive settings, these well-paced, affecting and funny novels are about compassionate boys: Moose, caring for his autistic sister on Alcatraz Island (Al Capone); Stanley, who escapes from a juvenile detention camp to help another inmate (Holes).… (more)
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English (663)  Dutch (5)  German (2)  Swedish (1)  French (1)  Finnish (1)  All languages (673)
Showing 1-5 of 663 (next | show all)
Stanley is a young boy who is cursed with bad luck because of his great great grand father. He is sent off to a juvenile detention camp called camp green lake. At Camp Green Lake all the boys are required to dig holes in the desert all day every day. Through out the novel, you come to find out why stanley is cursed and how it relates back to Camp Green Lake. Camp green lake actually used to be a beautiful town before the lake dried up. Now the owner makes the boys dig in search of the treasure that was supposedly left behind. ( )
  Emilysill | Nov 19, 2015 |
Stanley Yelnats is arrested for a crime he did not commit and is sent to a prison in the Texas desert where he must dig a hole every day--but what is the Warden looking for?

I read this aloud to my son, and we both enjoyed it. I personally had to keep myself from racing ahead and finishing the darn thing to find out what happens! I think Holes just goes to show that writing a really good children's book is even harder than writing for adults. This book has a rich back story, it flips back and forth in time, it's funny, it's got a mystery, it's a buddy book, it's an adventure, we really care about the characters, there is serious danger that must be overcome, and everything is tied together satisfactorily at the end. In other words, it has to do everything that adult books do, but at a level that kids can relate to and enjoy. I read a lot of humdrum kids' books, so it's nice to come across one that hearkens back to the great stories I remember from my own childhood. ( )
  sturlington | Nov 19, 2015 |
In this book a young boy named Stanley Yelnats gets sent to a disciplinary camp for young boys.There the boys are told day in and day out to dig holes. One day Stanley digs his hole and finds the lipstick to an old Outlaw. This is the beginning to a long adventure he has. In the end Stanley finds what they were digging holes for and unravels some things about his family he never knew.

Personal Reaction:
I have read the book and seen the movie and they are both really good. I think it is a good book for kids to get and stay interested in.

Classroom Extension Ideas:
1) Have the students group up and answer questions about the story
2) Have a movie day after reading the book
3) Have the students share some things about their family history
  connorshayne | Nov 18, 2015 |
This book is about a boy who just happened to be there when things were going wrong. Because of this he got blamed for the crime. He now had to choose jail or go to camp. He choose camp, but the camp was horrible. The men who ran it only wanted to find the treasure that was somewhere on the land. Stanly and his friends wanted to leave this horrible place so they fought their way out. Fighting I mean by going against the owners of the camp.
I liked this book. It is very interesting and many people have read it. I have also seen the movie. This book has unexpected things along the way, but Stanley always had a great outlook. I believe this book is good for reading and a lesson to be learned.
An extension to this book could that he reflects on his life when grows old and tell the story to his kids and grandkids. Another extension could be that he writes a comic book about what all happened, but makes a few changes to make it funny.
I think if this comic book were to be made that it would encourage younger reader to look at the pictures and get familiar with the story. So they when they grow older and more knowledgeable readers they can look up the real book and read it. ( )
  hollym0714 | Nov 18, 2015 |
This book is very captivating and intriguing. I remember watching the movie as a kid but reading the book helped me better understand the whole purpose behind why Stanley was doing what he was doing. I really enjoyed reading this story and can see a lot of my future students loving it as well.
  ninaberger | Nov 16, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 663 (next | show all)
Stanley Yelnats is a young man with some teenage problems like being overweight, poor, and social outcast. His father is an inventor and his mother is a loving and supporting woman. He believes that he and his family are cursed and that life offers nothing but a bad luck to them. Interesting fact about his name is that his last name is his first name spelled backward. His family blames his “no good-dirty-rotten-pig-stealing-great-great-grandfather” for a family misfortune. Because of the broken promise of the great-great-grandfather, a gypsy lady doomed his family with a bad luck.
Numerous happenings led him to conclusion that something needs to be done to get rid of the bad luck. He often finds himself being at the wrong place at the wrong time. After being falsely accused of stealing a pair of snickers from a famous basketball player at an auction for homeless, Stanley picks a Green Lake Detention Camp for Boys to serve a sentence. There is nothing green nor lake like about that juvenile correction facility. The camp is run by The Warden and Mr. Sir. Those two are very brutal people who direct each kid to dig a hole each day under the blazing hot sun. The official purpose of hole digging is to build a character. A hidden purpose is to look for buried and lost treasure of outlaw, Kissing Katy Barlow.
I see Stanley growing and changing into a leader throughout the book. He lifts himself and other around him. Teaming up with “Zero” brought many new and surprising events in his life. Together they succeeded in fighting against cruelty of Warden and her team.
Many teenagers can relate to Stanley. There is a lot to learn in this book about hard work, loyalty, friendship, persistence, love, hard work and fate.
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Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
To Sherrie, Jessica, Lori, Kathleen, and Emily
And to Judy Allen, a fifth-grade teacher from whom we all can learn
First words
There is no lake at Camp Green Lake.
If you take a bad boy and make him dig a hole everyday in the hot sun, it will turn him into a good boy.
It was all because of his no-good-dirty-rotten-pig-stealing-great-great-grandfather.
But everyone makes mistakes. You may have done some bad things, but that doesn't mean you're a bad kid.
His muscles and hands weren’t the only parts of his body that had toughened over the past several weeks. His heart had hardened as well.
It felt good to walk in the shade of the two oak trees. Stanley wondered if this was how a condemned man felt on his way to the electric chair – appreciating all of the good things in life for the last time.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Please distinguish between Louis Sachar's original novel Holes (1998), and other variants of the same or related material. Thank you.
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Information from the German Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (4)

Book description
Stanley Yelnats is under a curse. A curse that began with his no-good-dirty-rotten-pig-stealing-great-great-grandfather and has since followed generations of Yelnats. Now Stanley has been unjustly sent to a boys' detention center, Camp Green Lake, where the warden makes the boys "build character" by spending all day, every day, digging holes. It doesn't take long for Stanley to realize there's more than character improvement going on at Camp Green Lake. The boys are digging holes because the warden is looking for something. Stanley tries to dig up the truth in this inventive and darkly humorous tale of crime and punishment--and redemption.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0439244196, Paperback)

Stanley Yelnats is unjustly sent to Camp Green Lake where he and other boys are sentenced to dig holes to build character. Stanley learns the warden has them digging holes for something else- but what?

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:13:29 -0400)

(see all 9 descriptions)

As further evidence of his family's bad fortune which they attribute to a curse on a distant relative, Stanley Yelnats is sent to a hellish correctional camp in the Texas desert where he finds his first real friend, a treasure, and a new sense of himself.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 9 descriptions

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