BOOK REVIEW: Holes by Louis Sachar


I have decided to write up book reviews on this site as often as I can, so watch this space. My first review is of Holes, by Louis Sachar. I recommend it for 10 years and over.

Stanley Yelnats has bad luck, because, supposedly, his family lineage is cursed. (Shock! Horror!), thanks to his no-good-dirty-rotten-pig-stealing-great-great-grandfather. Stanley is constantly finding himself in the wrong place at the wrong time. That eventually lands him in a juvenile detention centre (although he was innocent of the crime he had supposedly committed). The centre is called Camp Green Lake. Every day at camp they are forced to dig one hole, supposedly to build character. But what are really digging for?

In order to discover the truth, Stanley must band together with his campmates Zero, X-Ray, Armpit, Squid, Magnet and Zigzag. But will they find out the camp’s ulterior motives?

Stanley is an inspiring character. He may seem a little hard at first, but inside he’s got a warm soul. He is a good leader, which helps when he and his campmate Zero go on the run from Camp Green Lake.

Throughout the story, there are flashbacks to different time periods, including the true story of Stanley’s great-great grandfather, Elya Yelnats, and also flashbacks to 110 years ago, when the town of Green Lake was thriving, and what led to its downfall.

My favourite character in the book is Zero. All the boys in camp have nicknames, but Zero is called Zero by the counsellors as well. However, he confesses to Stanley that his real name is Hector Zeroni. He is thought by the counsellors and kids at camp to be quite stupid, and it is true that he never learned to read or write, which Stanley helps him with. But Zero possesses a large amount of intelligence, and says he just “doesn’t like answering questions.” He is best at mathematics, and demonstrates this several times. Zero’s character brings out a lot of emotions in my mind. He’s thought stupid, but really, his sheer willpower, loyalty, and determination make him the smartest, and he is a good friend, especially when on the run with Stanley.

That is my review of Holes by Louis Sachar. It is a funny, moving, thrilling story that touches your heart forever, Sachar at his best. I assure you, you won’t be able to put it down. If you (yes, you!) want to find out what happens in Holes, get the book for yourself. I will be doing more book reviews in the future, so if you have any suggestions for books you would like me to review, let me know in the comments, and I will do my best to get them all read!


Jordi Blake.



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