Holes

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Description

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.

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Product details

  • Paperback | 240 pages
  • 128 x 196 x 16mm | 160g
  • Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • New edition
  • New edition
  • 074754459X
  • 9780747544593
  • 4,074

About Louis Sachar

Louis Sachar is the author of several popular novels for children - all published in the USA. He lives in Austin, Texas. This is the first of his books published in the UK.

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Review Text

Sentenced to a brutal juvenile detention camp for a crime he didn't commit, a wimpy teenager turns four generations of bad family luck around in this sunburnt tale of courage, obsession, and buried treasure from Sachar (Wayside School Gets a Little Stranger, 1995, etc.). Driven mad by the murder of her black beau, a schoolteacher turns on the once-friendly, verdant town of Green Lake, Texas, becomes feared bandit Kissin' Kate Barlow, and dies, laughing, without revealing where she buried her stash. A century of rainless years later, lake and town are memories - but, with the involuntary help of gangs of juvenile offenders, the last descendant of the last residents is still digging. Enter Stanley Yelnats IV, great-grandson of one of Kissin' Kate's victims and the latest to fall to the family curse of being in the wrong place at the wrong time; under the direction of The Warden, a woman with rattlesnake venom polish on her long nails, Stanley and each of his fellow inmates dig a hole a day in the rock-hard lake bed. Weeks of punishing labor later, Stanley digs up a clue, but is canny enough to conceal the information of which hole it came from. Through flashbacks, Sachar weaves a complex net of hidden relationships and well-timed revelations as he puts his slightly larger-than-life characters under a sun so punishing that readers will be reaching for water bottles. Good Guys and Bad get just deserts in the end, and Stanley gets plenty of opportunities to display pluck and valor in this rugged, engrossing adventure. (Kirkus Reviews)

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Review quote

'Holes is one of those instant classics that adults, as well as children over eight, will thoroughly enjoy. Sachar has created something quite different from JK Rowling or Philip Pullman, but no less enchanting' Independent on Sunday 'If you want a witty, moving read that grabs you and never lets up, look no further than Holes' The Daily Telegraph 'Forget the fame and glamour of Holes, the movie and the rest. Just remember Camp Green Lake and that story that gave us one of the best books of the last ten years' Books for Keeps

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Customer reviews

Funny, intriguing, bizzare, fast paced....a most enjoyable read. This short book will appeal to children and adults but it is not a "childish" book as it deals with inhumanity, injustice, greed and retribution but all in an accessible way. I read it in a single afternoon and chuckled at various points and nearly shed a tear at others. Read it enjoy it but.....beware of the yellow spotted lizards, unless you quickly work out how to repel them!show more
by Roger Manley