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Monday, October 13, 2008

Children's Classics - Newbery Winner

Children's ClassicsFor this month's Children's Classics on 5 Minutes for Books we're talking about Newbery Medal Books. I've chosen to talk about the book Holes (which was the 1999 Newbery Winner) which I read at the beginning of this year along with my online bookclub. I was going to repost my original review of the book but since that time I've changed both my opinion of the book as well as my reviewing style and re-reading the review actually pains me now. Go figure.

I started out not liking this book. I finished it still not liking it (but claiming I did). After I read the book, I saw the movie version which I absolutely L-O-V-E-D! The screen play was written by the Louis Sachar, author of Holes, so it is very true to the story. It is also extremely entertaining.

When I first read it I thought it was an attack on the Texas Department of Corrections. I'm now rolling my eyes at myself. I now view it as an imaginative "western" for tweens that is a sure fire way to make the least enthusiastic reader on the planet extremely satisfied.

This book has it all: buried treasure, love and loss, injustice, redemption and a happy ending. This is the story of Stanley Yelnats who is falsely accused of stealing a pair of shoes and is sent to a prison camp to dig holes as punishment. Turns out the warden of the camp is using the boys to dig holes in hopes of finding a buried treasure. The villain is dirty-rotten and worthy of being despised. Stanley is a hero worthy of admiration. Sachar weaves together the past and the present Yelnats family history in such a way as to delight.

Yes, now that I've seen the movie I see this book as being great entertainment and could and would heartily recommend it. Even though it won an award like the Newbery (which can typically make me run in the opposite direction from a book . . . I wonder about book awards sometimes).

9 comments:

Yasmin said...

I loved the book and the movie...have seen the movie tons of times...

Christin said...

I've never read Holes but it sounds interesting! Thank you for sharing.

Jennifer, Snapshot said...

When I saw you had posted about the book, I wondered if you had seen the movie. I saw the movie with some youth group kids a while ago, but haven't read the book.

Sounds like a good write up for Books on Screen, especially since the movie sort of changed your perception of the book.

Jen E @ mommablogsalot said...

I keep thinking about either reading this book or seeing the movie - great review - isn't it funny how we can completely change our mind on whether or not we liked a book way after the fact?

Bluestocking said...

I haven't read the book or seen the movie.

mine

Natasha @ Maw Books said...

I read Holes just a few months prior to starting my blog and I've been really tempted to reread it because I would love to review it. I thought it was so much fun!

Nise' said...

I have not read the books. I have seen snippets of the movie. Both my boys enjoyed both.

Sarah M. said...

I picked a copy of this book up while traveling a few years ago. I didn't think I would like it, but in the end I did. It was a great/clever story. I've yet to see the film.

TheAngelForever said...

Great review. I really enjoyed Holes as well. I thought the book to movie transition was much better than I expected thanks to Sachar writing both.

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