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Holes by Louis Sachar
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Holes (original 1998; edition 2008)

by Louis Sachar

Series: Holes (1)

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13,455566161 (4.08)1 / 275
kimlien91's review
Summary: This book is a novel about the main character that is sent to a detention camp because of being accused of stealing a pair of shoes. The story then goes on to tell his experience at the detention camp.
Personal Reaction: I enjoyed reading this book when I was in school because I hated reading but this book kept me interested.
Extension: This book could be a good way to get kids to start reading novels in the classroom.
  kimlien91 | Apr 25, 2012 |
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Holes is a book about a boy who had run into a terrible bad luck streak, it became so bad that he ended up getting sent a camp that was pretty much like jail and he runs into a great cast of people, except the people who ran the camp who treated everyone like trash. He thinks of plans to escape but what ended up happening is that he found why he was cursed and he fixed it. And they finally realized it was a mistake that he was their

A little more difficult book for kids to read but i find that kids would love to read the book and watch the movie to talk about the differences.

Have the kids write all the differences between the movie and the book talk about some times they had bad luck streaks
  RaymondGraham | Jul 22, 2014 |
This is a amazing book. I originally watched the movie before the book but, the book is so much better. The story keeps the reader on the edge of their seat the whole time and it gives the reader a good mental picture of the events that are taking place in the book. This book would be great for the classroom because it can teach them valuable life lessons as well as making for a great story. This is one of my favorite books because of how good the story flows and that the movie is really great in that it makes the story even more powerful. ( )
  loganbuttram330 | Jul 22, 2014 |
Summary
This book is about a boy named Stanley Yelnats. He was always at the wrong place at the wrong time because of a curse that has been upon his family for years. Stanley was accused of something he didn't do and was sent to camp green lake where he would did holes to build character. Although, the real reason for digging the holes was to find treasure that the warden wanted. Stanley met his best friend zero at this camp and eventually the book tells how Stanley, the curse, zero, the warden, and treasure are all tired together. In the end, the curse is broken, the warden is taken to jail, and the boys are set free.
Personal reaction
Love this book! It is one of my favorites! My grandmother read this book to me and I was so excited when they came out with the movie for it. I watched it over and over!
Idea extensions
This book can really gets children's minds working trying to put all the pieces together.
Together or separately a short story could written to show how one thing can effect another and then try to tie it all together in the end.
As you read the book you could make stopping points and ask the class to tell what they think will happen next.
  christa15 | Jul 16, 2014 |
"Holes" is a book about a young boy, Stanley Yelnats, who gets sent to Camp Green Lake after being accused of stealing a famous baseball players pair of shoes. When Stanley arrives at the camp he realizes it's not how he pictured and is forced to dig holes everyday. He meets a friend there named Zero. They soon realize that the warden is making them dig holes because she is looking for something. One day Stanley and Zero attempt to run away from the camp and survive only by eating onions for a week, then then return to the camp and find the treasure. The treasure has Stanley's name on it and in the end him and Zero were released with the treasure and sent home.

This was my favorite book for a while. This was one of the first books we were assigned to read when I was in middle school and re-read it numerous times since then, along with watching the movie. The main character is Stanley Yelnats and the setting is at Camp Green Lake. This book had the conflict person against society, person against nature and possibly person against person. He was accused by society of something he didn't do which led him to be sent to Camp Green Lake, Stanley also faced person against nature when him and Zero tried escaping and were in the dessert for about a week. Lastly, person against person for when he first arrived at the camp with boys like X-Ray etc. Stanley was a dynamic character as he changed somewhat throughout the story.

Two classroom extension ideas: Have the children draw what kind of food they would want to eat for a whole week if they had the choice. After reading the story, we could go over why it was a bad thing that Zero took the shoes when he shouldn't have.
  bm091113 | Jul 13, 2014 |
Summary: This book is about a boy named Stanley Yelnats who is sent to a Juvenile Prison at Camp Green Lake. Stanley along with the other boys are forced to dig holes all day every day. Stanley meets a friend named Zero and they figure out that the Warden is making them all dig holes, because they are looking for something. One day Stanley and Zero run away from camp. They survive on eating onions. They are gone for about a week, but then return to the camp to find the treasure. They find a suitcase with Stanley's last name on it. The suitcase is valuable and Stanley finally gets reunited with his family at the end.

Personal Reaction: I loved to read this book when I was younger. I was so happy when they came out with a movie, although the book was way better. I think that this is a wonderful choice for young adults to read.

Classroom Extensions: 1) I would discuss with all the children how they would feel if they had to survive on eating only onions for a week. I would ask them what food they would pick to eat for a week straight. 2) I would ask the school if my students could plant a mini garden outside. I would bring hand shovels and have them plant onions. When the onions grew I would let each child taste it if they wanted to. ( )
  SmithAlec | Jul 11, 2014 |
This is the story of cursed Stanley Yelnats, a boy who through a misunderstanding is sent to a 'camp' where the boys are forced to dig a 5x5 hole every day. The story of Stanley is woven with the story of his great great grandfather and Kissin' Kate, all together forming the picture that the boys are helping the warden search for a buried treasure that actually belongs to Stanley. Through the course of the novel, Stanley and Zero develop a friendship and the curse is broken, bringing good luck and fortune to Stanley ,Zero, and their families. In a classroom, we discuss the flashbacks and how different the book would be without that information, and I also have them make a brochure of the camp like you would find at a travel center. ( )
  hellwanger | Jul 7, 2014 |
In Holes, Stanley Yelnats is found guilty of a crime he didn’t commit and has the choice of going to prison or Camp Green Lake. Unfortunately, Camp Green Lake is neither green nor in possession of a lake and the warden believes digging a hole a day will help the boys build character. However, Stanley quickly realizes that the warden is digging for something in particular and that the mystery of Camp Green Lake may connect to his own family history.

I’ve always liked Louis Sachar’s sense of humor, which is very dry and a little bit wacky. His writing is perfect for his sense of humor, short and succinct. However, this author I liked in middle school didn’t quite hold up to my memory. The main character’s thoughts and reactions were realistic, but the dialogue was choppy. The transitions to scenes from the past are a little rough as well. Finally, everything connected to everything else excessively neatly, although this was often part of the dry humor.

I think I originally watched the movie before reading the book, but I’d definitely seen the movie before this re-read and I’m glad I had. Having an idea of the plot helped with the rough transitions to the past because I already knew how they connected to the present. The choppy dialogue was much less bothersome because I could picture the characters saying them as in the movie. And the quirky characters in the movie really enhance the author’s humor. The book could probably be enjoyed without seeing the movie, but the movie helped compensate for the books weaknesses and enhanced it’s strengths.

This review first posted on Doing Dewey. ( )
  DoingDewey | Jun 29, 2014 |
It is about a boy who got in trouble.
  cassierunyon | Jun 26, 2014 |
This is the first book I ever remember actively disliking. Even in elementary school, I was bored every time I had to read it, which was multiple times across a few different grade levels. I never got the appeal of the outlandish story or enjoyed Stanley and his peers as much as my classmates did. I read part of this book over the summer and my final impression is about the same as my first. ( )
  Stormydawnc | Jun 23, 2014 |
I am rereading this book with my my 7 Y.O old. I read parts of this originally while student teaching in a " Read 180 " Class I really loved it and I really wanted to know what happened in the end. I recently SAw the movie, twice and really loved it too so now I endeavour to finish this book. I love the story and although it is classified as a "boys Adventure" book, I really think my 7 year old little "girly girl" will love it too.

The story is very uplifting, and speaks to the values I would like to instil in my daughter, that is the value of hope, a positive outlook on life, kindness, acceptance of others, and perseverance.
Plus it is so much fun and very easy to read book. ( )
  gillv | Jun 12, 2014 |
Stanley Yelnats' family has a history of bad luck going back generations, so he is not too surprised when a miscarriage of justice sends him to Camp Green Lake Juvenile Detention Centre. Nor is he very surprised when he is told that his daily labour at the camp is to dig a hole, five foot wide by five foot deep, and report anything that he finds in that hole. The warden claims that it is character building, but this is a lie and Stanley must dig up the truth. In this wonderfully inventive, compelling novel that is both serious and funny, Louis Sachar has created a masterpiece that will leave all readers amazed and delighted by the author's narrative flair and brilliantly handled plot. ( )
  Stsmurphy | Jun 7, 2014 |
I started this book without knowing anything about it, and that is, to be honest, one of my favorite ways to start a book.
I loved the subtle magical element and how everything was woven together at the end. Zero was definitely my favorite character. On the other boys I just couldn't make up my mind, I neither hated them nor liked them, I felt sorry for them but they were outright mean at times. Stanley was OK, I liked his character, but Zero wins hands down. I was also really touched by Kissin' Kate's story, I felt so bad for her, she deserved better.
I really enjoyed how the changes between past and present were written, there wasn't any separation but you could tell right away.
I really enjoyed the book from when Stanley and Zero escaped to God's thumb until the end, which I also really liked.. how the curse was lifted, how Sam (the onion man) revealed that the lizards didn't bite them because of the onions, just wonderful Also, my love for onions has been dramatically increased by my reading this story!
( )
  Yvaine_Thorn | Jun 7, 2014 |
I am reading a great book called holes. This book is about a great adventure involving multiple generations of people and curses. I reccomend this book to all ages and I recorded this book because it is the best book i have read in a long time. I don't usually like to read ether and there were times i could not put the book down i give this book five stars because of the way it is write and the details. ( )
  br14mari | Jun 6, 2014 |
"If only, if only, the woodpecker sighs, the bark on the trees was as soft as the skies." This poem always hits me for some reason. It is only a small part of what makes this book great. I have enjoyed this book everytime I read it. The small world that Sachar created at Camp Greenlake is full of life and the characters are simple but rememberable. It really shows what it is like for these kids but also allows room for humor. The ending section is touching with Stanley and Zero's heartfelt journey. I would recommend this book to anyone. ( )
  thedreadlink | May 16, 2014 |
Holes Louis Sachar 1998 published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. 240 pages a young man who has to go to jail or a corrections camp. He chooses the camp thinking it will be a fun place and finds out it is a dessert and they are to dig holes all day until he finds out he is innocent and his ancestors have a long history with the others. I liked this book it was fun to see how everything fit together in the end of the book.
  joey_spencer | May 13, 2014 |
I really enjoyed reading this book for a few reasons. I have seen the movie before and it helps to use those images to picture the setting, characters, etc. when reading the book. The writing is very engaging and the reader is pushing to know that the warden is looking for. It’s suspenseful and we can feel the tension between the warden and the young boys who dig holes. The characters are very well-developed and believable. For those children who have difficulty reading, they can best relate to Zero who cannot read very well. This story pushes the reader to think of why the boys are digging holes to “build character.” The big idea of this story is to never give up. If you keep trying, you will eventually move forward and get to where you want to go. ( )
  kbrehm1 | May 5, 2014 |
This is a great book to go over as a group over an extended period of time. It is a wonderful book to use for comprehension and prediction what will happen next in a story based on what you have already read.
  KayceBivins | Apr 30, 2014 |
Summary-

Stanely is wrongly accused of stealing some shoes. He is sent to a work camp for boys. The warden has a secret want to find treasure buried in the desert. She makes the boys in the camp dig holes. Stanely has a fateful connection with one of the other boys at the camp.

Personal Reaction-

I read this book when I was in the 4th grade and I remember not being able to put it down. It is a great, quick read. I've also seen the movie and it does a good job of keeping to the book.

Extensions-

1) Act out a chapter from the story
2) Make a wanted poster for one of the characters
  megblack | Apr 27, 2014 |
This was one of my favorite books that I read. I loved this book because of the characterization of Stanley and because of the descriptive vocabulary. Stanley was characterized as a helpful, determined boy who only wanted the best for his friends and family. I think the way the author characterized Stanley was great because he was such a positive main character that could teach the reader valuable lessons. For example, Stanley took time to teach his friend, Zero, to read and write. He did this only out of the good in his heart and to help a friend. I also loved the use of descriptive vocabulary. The author wrote, "He was on a long bus ride to nowhere. The bus was not air-conditioned, and the hot, heavy air was almost as stifling as the handcuffs." This descriptive vocabulary allows the reader to put themselves in Stanley's shoes and feel his discomfort and fear as he drove to this correctional camp. It helps the reader paint an image in their mind of the environment he was in. The main message I took from this book is to work to your full potential and to always help others when you can. ( )
  NikkiDahlen | Apr 27, 2014 |
Appropriate for older elementary and middle school readers.

The story skips back and forth between generations, and all of them are engaging and enjoyable.

Themes to write about may be:
- The impact of your ancestors on you
- "Karma"/what comes around goes around/you reap what you sow
- What genre would you consider this book? ( )
  BrianEJanssen | Apr 27, 2014 |
Summary: This book is about a teenager who is falsely accused of stealing a famous basketball players shoes, and ends up in a detention camp, or more like prison. His boss is a mean guy who has a side kick type man helping him run the place. The warden is an evil woman who is in desperate need to find the treasure that a woman once buried deep in the desert. When Stanly's friend Zero runs away from the camp, he runs after him and finally catches up. The climb to the top of a mountain that looks like a thumb and when Stanly realized Zero is an ancestor of a woman who cursed his family he sings a song to them while they eat onions and drink water and the curse is removed. Stanly's dad finds a scent for his air freshener business which happens to be onions and peaches, and Stanly and Zero go back to the camp and find the treasure. The warden tries to take it but the boys are covered by poisonous lizards and finally his lawyer gets there. Zero hires a detective to find his mom with all his money and the camp is turned into a fun place and the warden and other men go to jail.

Personal Reaction: I have seen this movie as a kid so I decided to read the book and compare the similarities. They are almost alike to a tee. I love this book because it shows the bond between two boys that is unbreakable. It shows that working bad kids to the bone is not the way to punish them, that maybe they just need a better place to be and to get their head on straight. It is a great book about family and friends and justice.

Classroom extensions:
1. The students could draw a picture of themselves as a character from the book from a scene (like with the treasure.)
2. The students could add a chapter to the book about what they think happens next, maybe to the boys who were placed in the camp, ect.
3. The students could watch the movie in class and compare the book, and if they liked the characters.
  KendraAdams | Apr 24, 2014 |
Summary: This book is about a teen named Stanley who has bad luck and is sent to Camp Green Lake due to his bad luck. Stanley and the other boys at the camp dig holes all day at the camp for something the Warden at the camp is looking for.

Personal Reaction: I liked this book a lot. It has a very good story and a complex storyline.

Classroom Extensions: 1) Have the students research historical outlaws and the reasons behind their crimes.
2) Have the students make a poster over a character from the book. Is this person an protagonist or antagonist? Are they a main character? What does the character do? How do they look? Act? ( )
  Skylerdabney | Apr 23, 2014 |
summary-Stanley Yalnates, a young boy who gets accused of stealing a pair of shoes by a basketball player, Clyde. (sweetfeet) So, he gets sent to Camp Green Lake. This is an unusual boot camp for troubled boys his age. At camp Green Lake they spent tall day in the blazing heat digging holes. This was meant to build character.

personal reaction- I read this book when I was in 5th grade and loved it so much. It was a great book and I loved the movie as well

classroom ext-
1. I could use this in the classroom when discussing greed with the students.
2. I could use this in my classroom by having the students do a character analysis over one of the characters.
  carlibmiller | Apr 23, 2014 |
Summary: It's a story about a boy who's family has nothing but bad luck. They blame their luck/curse on their no good pig rotten great great uncle Stanley Yelnats. Stanley was accused of a crime that he didn't commit and he was sentenced to Camp Green Lake. Camp Green Lake is a dry dusty place and their unishment is to dig a hole as deep and wide as their shovels. When Stanley and his friend Zero run away they discover that their isnt a curse on the family and their luck changes for the better when they go back to Camp. Stanley was found innocent and his family fell into a fortune.

Personal Reaction: I loved this book. This interesting story really got my imagination going throughout the whole book. Great book to have.

Classroom Extention Ideas:
1) Ask the class to draw and color a scene from the book the way they picture it.

2) Print pages from the book and do the some found poetry with them.

3) Tell the class to create a character and ask them where and how would they be placed in the story.

4) Ask the class if they could change any part of the story how would they change it. ( )
  ElizabethJackson7 | Apr 23, 2014 |
Stanley Yelnats' family has a history of bad luck going back generations, so he is not too surprised when a miscarriage of justice sends him to Camp Green Lake Juvenile Detention Centre. Nor is he very surprised when he is told that his daily labour at the camp is to dig a hole, five foot wide by five foot deep, and report anything that he finds in that hole. The warden claims that it is character building, but this is a lie and Stanley must dig up the truth. In this wonderfully inventive, compelling novel that is both serious and funny, Louis Sachar has created a masterpiece that will leave all readers amazed and delighted by the author's narrative flair and brilliantly handled plot
  Megan88 | Apr 22, 2014 |
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