Skip to main content
Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group


Louis Sachar

Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)



20 Years in Print

Winner of the National Book Award

“Dazzling” —Publishers Weekly, starred review
“Heartrending” —The Horn Book, starred review
“Brilliant” —School Library Journal, starred review
“Engrossing” —Kirkus Reviews
“A joyful, eerie tour de force” —The Boston Sunday Globe
“Wildly inventive” —The New York Times Book Review

Stanley Yelnats’s family has a history of bad luck, so he isn’t too surprised when a miscarriage of justice sends him to a boys’ juvenile detention center, Camp Green Lake. But there is no lake—it has been dry for over a hundred years—and it’s hardly a camp: as punishment, the boys must each dig a hole a day, five feet deep, five feet across, in the hard earth of the dried-up lake bed. The warden claims that this pointless labor builds character, but that’s a lie. Stanley must try to dig up the truth.

In this wonderfully inventive, compelling novel that is both serious and funny, Louis Sachar weaves a narrative puzzle that tangles and untangles, until it becomes clear that the hand of fate has been at work in the lives of the characters—and their forebears—for generations. It is a darkly humorous tale of crime, punishment, and redemption.

NY 3 Apples Book Award Master List, BCCB Blue Ribbon Award, Vermont Dorothy Canfield Fisher Award, Florida Sunshine State YR Award, Christopher Awards - Winner, Horn Book Magazine Fanfare List, Boston Globe - Horn Book Award, Newbery Medal Winner, ALA Notable Children's Books, Publishers Weekly Best Books of the Year, ALA Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adults, ALA Best Books for Young Adults, Edgar Allan Poe Award Nominee, National Book Awards Winner, NYTBR Notable Children's BOTY

Praise for Holes

“Vladimir Radunsky created the artwork for the 1998 hardcover, and another of his striking paintings adorns Farrar, Straus and Giroux's 10th-anniversary edition . . . Wrapped in an acetate jacket, the whole package has a crisp, sparkling appeal. Kid-friendly bonus materials include lighthearted personal perspectives written by Sachar's older brother, daughter, and wife; his Newbery acceptance speech; and several black-and-white photos, mostly taken on the movie set.” —School Library Journal's Extra Helping

“Stanley Yelnats IV has been wrongly accused of stealing a famous baseball player's valued sneakers and is sent to Camp Green Lake, a juvenile detention home where the boys dig holes, five feet deep by five feet across, in the miserable Texas heat. It's just one more piece of bad luck that's befallen Stanley's family for generations...There is no question, kids will love Holes.” —Starred, School Library Journal


Reviews from Goodreads

Louis Sachar

LOUIS SACHAR made history with Holes, which won every major children's book award and was turned into a movie. He lives in Austin, Texas.

image of Louis Sacharo
Photo by Carla Sachar

Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)

Latest on Facebook