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.  (Summary and book cover courtesy of goodreads.com)


I loved this book. I’ve probably read it half a dozen times.  It’s particularly good because it includes historical references effectively weaved with the modern world.  I loved how the story switched between eras and points of view making you feel you really knew the characters.  It’s interesting how the book stars out with the premise that life isn’t fair and from there it’s about how Stanley reacts to his situation.  As a young adult reading this for the first time, I was caught up in the injustice, but was fascinated with the historical parallels as well.  To avoid giving the ending away, I will just say I think most adults enjoy this book as much as kids.

This was also an example of a movie interpretation that was fantastically done, I’d highly recommend it as well.

Rating: 5 stars!

Who should read it? Everyone, particularly all teens should give it a read.

Want to read the sequel? Small Steps (Holes #2)!  I didn’t realize there was a sequel so I will be curious to read this at some point.