Holes, By Louis Sachar
(Reviewed by Dom)
I host writing workshops and assemblies for lots of students every year, primarily at middle schools. During my presentations I often refer to several books as examples of certain elements in writing, whether it’s character development, setting, or what have you. Holes, the award-winning tale from Louis Sachar, is one of those books that I carry with me, and the response from students is always overwhelming: They love this book!
And guess what? Adults love it, too. I know that many of you might have seen the movie adaptation, which was also well done, but I’m hoping that you’ll make time to sit down with the book.
Stanley Yelnats (which itself is a palindrome - spelled the same forward and backward) comes from a family well-acquainted with bad luck. In fact, they feel cursed, a condition that goes back generations. Of course, when Stanley is sent to a camp for troubled boys because of a case of mistaken identity (truly, he’s innocent), it’s no surprise. It’s expected that anyone of Yelnats descent will be doomed.
Instead of jail, Stanley is offered the chance to go to Camp Green Lake. Of course, any lake has long been dried up, leaving a desolate, hot, dismal dry lake bed, and a setting that you feel every time Stanley awakens to start his day. And that day consists of digging holes. … (more…)