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Holes (Holes #1)

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3.9 of 5 stars 3.90  ·  rating details  ·  499,046 ratings  ·  11,162 reviews
This winner of the Newbery Medal and the National Book Award features Stanley Yelnats, a kid who 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 charact...more
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Published September 23rd 2003 by Listening Library (Audio) (first published January 1st 1998)
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Catie
I am very sad that I never read this as a young person, because I think that I would have loved it even more than I do now. I think that it probably would have blown my mind. I have to applaud Louis Sachar for being so courageous in a children’s novel.

Effortlessly weaving together the past, present, and ancient history of these characters, Mr. Sachar examines the impact of our history and the nature of hope and human compassion, all while maintaining a light, humorous quality. This is a book for...more
Shayantani Das
No wonder this book has got a Newberry Award. Its 200 something pages of pure awesomeness! By beautifully executing such an ingenious concept, Louis Sachar has made me his fan.

Stanley Yelnats is an over sized preteen who is falsely accused of stealing. He is provided with the option to choose between jail and camp green lake. Stanley is not well of, and has never been to camp, so his choice is obvious. Unfortunately though, Camp green lake is not the usual camp. He gets his fair share of adventu...more
Becky
Funny story: I'm trying to shelve this book, and can't remember if it had been banned (but I thought it had - google confirmed). At the same time, my friend Allison and I are chatting on Google Chat, and she starts ranting about how ridiculous book banning is (an opinion with which I agree wholeheartedly). Anyway, the conversation went like this:

me: Is Holes a banned book? I can't remember
allison: dunno... the whole concept of banned books is stupid. I mean, you could find a reason to gripe abo
...more
Ranee
I knew of a friend who lost everything when her father started digging holes. You see, her dad was a treasure hunter. And to be a treasure hunter, you are supposed to be well equipped and with good manpower. You must also be in possession of a reliable map and a lot of time. You also need a lot of money to be able to acquire all the above things. Unfortunately, my friend's father only acquired a fake map, swindlers for company and equipment worth nothing when you're digging the wrong hole. Littl...more
Chris
I was picking up some books at the resale shop and for some reason found myself browsing in the children’s books. It seemed like the usual fare at first, some Dr. Seuss, a mangy copy of a Clifford book, a few ratty Choose Your Own Adventure paperbacks, Hugh Hefner’s autobiography, some smut called “The Very Virile Viking”, and “Pimp” by Iceberg Slim. Tucked amongst all this tawdry trash was something called “Holes”, which seemed to make sense sandwiched between “Pimp” and Hef’s life saga.

I soon...more
Mary Taitt
Feb 05, 2008 Mary Taitt rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone
Recommended to Mary by: Erwin
Shelves: young-adult
Holes, by Louis Sachar, 5/5. It was really good; I loved it. It's a young adult novel from which a movie was made. I have not seen the movie, but I hope to. The book is a Newberry Award Winner.

Stanley Yelnats is falsely accused of stealing a pair of sneakers and set to Camp Green Lake, for criminal boys. To build character, the boys get up at 4:30 every morning and dig holes--big holes. If they find anything unusual, they are supposed to report it. But the warden isn't looking for fossils or pre...more
Heather
I thought this author did an especially clever job on the way he set up the story. He flipped back-and-forth between generations, never getting confusing, never giving information too soon, never giving information too late. This was very fun to read.
KristenR
I'm not sure exactly when it happened, but it seems I'm no longer absolutely cool in my daughter's eyes. I could understand if her particular issues with me were current fashion or "the" things to do while hanging out with friends, but books? BOOKS?!? Oh, the pain!

I don't say anything about the girly girl preteen drivel she loves to read (after all, I occasionally read girly girl grownup drivel) and I recommend a wide range of books (while keeping in mind she doesn't have the same penchant for s...more
Anna Aguirre
Love, love, love! Kids love it, too. A great novel about inner strength and persistence.
Rose
This is just another one of those everyone-loved-it-but-me types of books where I don't understand all the love for it.

I get it. If I was 6 or 7, I might have enjoyed it (though I'm not too sure about it). Considering I'm not 6 or 7 anymore, I now know when an author is simplifying/dumbing down his writing because he seems to think that this is the only way his intended audience will understand. That's just what I thought the whole time while reading Holes. I don't like it when authors think the...more
Brigid *Flying Kick-a-pow!*
Holes is one of my favorite books of all time. The whole thing is just so clever. The writing style is simple, but not boring. Every character is amazingly developed and believable. I like how the story of the present and the story of the past connect to each other perfectly in the end. And the movie version is really good, too! I highly suggest this book to everyone.
Shelly
This book really surprised me and surpassed all of my expectations for it. I loved the characters and thought the story itself was clever and nicely laid out. I never got the feeling that the author was talking down to his audience because this is a young adult novel, which is a big pet peeve of mine. Stanley and Zero were a great pair, though Zero was my favorite, and I was kept in constant suspense waiting for the next bad shoe to drop.
Jennifer
I read this while working at the bookstore. People kept coming in and saying "Do you have that book - Holes?" and finally I signed out a copy and read it to see what all the fuss was. It was a really good read! I immediatly understood why everyone was making a fuss over the book and why it was going to be made into a movie. (I never did see the movie.)

Mary JL
Aug 25, 2013 Mary JL rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone age 11 on up
Recommended to Mary JL by: Several recommendations on GR
I know this book won the Newberry Medal--and other awards. But I must review my books for me--I rate it a very good, strong 3 stars but no higher. Defintely worth reading for anyone, however. I also freely admit--had I read this at age 12, I WOULD have rated it four stars.

First, tops marks to the author for interlinking two stories--Stanley's incarceration at Camp Green Lake and the earlier tale of Kate Barlow. The matching and interweaving of the two plot lines is well done.

I would have liked a...more
Rachel Hartman
I didn't think it could be done, but we finally found it: a chapter book my son and I both enjoyed equally. It wasn't too scary for him (at least not once it became clear that Stanley really was going to be able to dig that first hole -- B was super worried about him), and it wasn't too tedious for me. We both looked forward to reading it together, and even made excuses to read longer than usual each evening because we were enjoying it so much.

I enjoyed watching my son piece together past and pr...more
Jacob
I know I never had this in my "currently reading" list, but I had to jump on it for the following reasons:

1) My friend Mitchell read it recently and reminded me of it,

2) I remembered we actually have a copy of this handy,

3) It wouldn't be hard to complete before the end of the year, and

4) It fits with a running theme of "books that have been made into movies", of which I've read more than a dozen this year (Tuck Everlasting, The Time Machine, I Robot, I am Number Four, Stardust, Gulliver's Trave...more
James
This is a book that I really really liked. Before I did not like any of the newberry honor or medal awarded books. Because I thought they were boring and full of themes and knowledges. This book is also a Newberry medal winner.This book is different. This could be a complicated book for low reading level readers, but it really gets interesting if you understand the story.
There was a boy called Stanley who was getting teased by bullies every day in his life. One day a pair of shoes fell out of...more
Eden
I finally went back and read this, and... stupendous. The fashion in which Louis Sachar unfolds his three stories -- four, if you count Zero's separately -- is pure wonder, 100% not from concentrate straight from the spring of genius. This is probably the only classic in elementary schools that I fully support. <3

While Stanley is the protagonist (and good thing too -- he's the one who the reader will feel closest, too), the novel really belongs to a cast of characters spanning countries and g...more
Spencer Johnston
Holes by Louis Sachar is a mystery/adventure novel about a boy named Stanley Yelnats. Stanley was from an economically disadvantaged family. He was accused of a theft that he did not commit. At his trial, Stanley is found guilty and has a choice of going to jail or a juvenile work prison called Camp Green Lake. He thinks carefully and decides on giving Camp Green Lake a chance.

The majority of the book is about Stanley's hard labor at Green Lake, the mystery surrounding Green Lake and Stanley's...more
Erin
Everybody knows who this man is, right?

I mean, I'm looking over the reviews for this book on the front page and I can find no mention. There's not a whisper of the author's previous successes. I'm absolutely flabbergasted that the word "Wayside" is not coming up in any of my "control+F" searches. Absolutely nothing.

"Sideways Stories from Wayside School"?! Really?! The absolute greatest story about an elementary school ever told? The one built sideways accidentally, with no 13th floor? Mrs. Gorf?...more
Leila T.
I just started Holes by Louis Sachar and the book is about a boy named Stanley who goes to sort of like a delinquent camp where as a punishment he has to dig a hole in the hot, grueling sun every single day that he is at the camp. At first it took me a little while to get interested in the book, but when I got interested the book just basically sucked me in. One thing that made the book so great was how descriptive Sachar was. For example, when he gets his shovel for the first time he describes...more
Paulo Flores Chico
If you don't know this, I love young adult novels. This one especially. It might seem like just another book about young boys dealing with pride, losers versus bullies, loyalty and masculinity. But there's actually really cute and romantic story in it all.
Martha
Holes, the book, has been on our bookshelf for several years, but I never picked it up to read. I remember my son saying how much he enjoyed reading it for a class back when. I saw bits and pieces of the movie when he was watching it, but I wasn’t interested. Who wants to watch a bunch of juvenile delinquents dig holes -- no, not for me. But, I picked it up recently for a quick read to jump start my “2014 reading challenge.” My son saw it in my hand and said: “Mom, you are going to like it.” Aft...more
Jin
This is my favorite book of all those boring books that I read so far. Even though I have to flip back to pages to remind myself I have read because the author had written the book in a complicated form. For example, the author wrote Stanley Yelnets’s story in a chapter, and someone else’s the next. Then, the author combines all the stories at the end. This story is about Stanley IV in Camp Green Lake, where he has to dig holes as punishment for stealing a pair of shoes which he didn’t steal. Ca...more
3Malik
Summary- Holes was a book about a family that was cursed by a gypsy because of Stanley's great great great Pig stealing Grandpa. Stanley's dad is trying to make a formula that will get rid of the smell of very old worn out sneakers. Stanley's family curse is making them unsuccessful in what he trying to do. Stanley is sent to Camp Green Lake because he was accused of stealing from an orphanage. He met Zero at the Camp. Zero ran away fro the camp Stanley went after him. Stanley didn't know Zero...more
Evan R.
Jan 14, 2008 Evan R. rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Recommended to Evan by: A teacher a long long time ago
This is a great book. I loved it, just the writing and the descriptions made it great. The plot is about a kid named Stanley Yelnats who has had bad luck running in his family for years. One day stanley is at the wrong place at the wrong time and gets accused of stealing a famous athletes shoes. The next thing you know hes at camp green lake digging 4 by 4 foot holes everyday. He gets a lot of tough love at first but overcomes it in the end. After going to camp greenlake the Yelnats streak of b...more
Beth F.
Great little book! If my future children are readers, this is definitely one I'd like to set in front of them.

The main character, Stanley Yelnats, is wrongly accused of stealing a pair of sneakers. And when it comes right down to it, he's not all that surprised that something like that would have happened to him thanks to a generational curse that has affected his family going all the way back to a promise broken by his great-great grandfather. Through an unusual set of circumstances (call it d...more
Lynai
Stanley Yelnats. This is the name of the boy who was sent to Camp Green Lake, a detention center for delinquent children, for a crime he didn’t commit. And he blames his no-good-dirty-rotten-pig-stealing-great-great-grandfather for it. At Camp Green Lake, the detainees including Stanley were to dig holes day after day, five feet wide and five feet deep. Will digging these holes help build character or is there something the warden is looking for?

There are three things I love the most about this...more
Madeline
Really, really entertaining, and a lot better than I expected it to be. The characters' histories and the way the past intersects with the future is wonderfully done (I know that's vague, but I can't go into more detail without giving away crucial plot points), plus the characters are great. Who wouldn't love an illiterate (but really smart) kid called Zero and a warden who adds rattlesnake venom to her nail polish?
Alondra
4 Stars. What a story. Nice story-telling with some serious 'dark-matter' involved. The vile behavior of the adults in charge of these kids seems all too real. I enjoyed how the main character came into his own, found his voice and himself. Would have been nice to read when I was a kid.
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Do you think Stanley and Zero's surviving in the desert is realistic? Why? 21 226 Oct 22, 2014 04:49AM  
All About YA : Holes 3 6 Oct 14, 2014 08:55PM  
UEL Primary PGCE ...: Deanna Quirke, book review 3 1 5 Sep 07, 2014 11:44AM  
UEL Primary PGCE ...: review 5 1 6 Sep 03, 2014 09:04AM  
The Book Was Better: HOLES 27 64 Aug 25, 2014 08:43PM  
Teen Library : Holes 8 9 Aug 09, 2014 10:21PM  
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Louis Sachar (pronounced Sacker), born March 20, 1954, is an American author of children's books.

More about Louis Sachar...
Sideways Stories from Wayside School (Wayside School #1) Wayside School Is Falling Down (Wayside School #2) Wayside School Gets A Little Stranger (Wayside School #3) Small Steps (Holes, #2) There's a Boy in the Girls' Bathroom

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“If only, if only," the woodpecker sighs,
"The bark on the tree was as soft as the skies."
While the wolf waits below, hungry and lonely,
Crying to the moo-oo-oon,
"If only, If only.”
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“It was all because of his no-good-dirty-rotten-pig-stealing great-great-grandfather!” 108 likes
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