Eoin Colfer on an unforgettable classic…
I wish I had written Holes by Louis Sachar. This is one of those books that is genuinely difficult to get out of your head once you start reading it. I was given this book by a publisher’s rep accompanied by the oft heard statement, ‘You have to read this!’ I hear this a dozen times a day, and generally I am disappointed, and find out that I do not indeed have to read the said book. But in this case, believe the hype. Once I started Holes, I was hard pressed to concentrate on anything else. The story is incredible, the characters are outlandish but totally credible and the book is filled with the kind of quirky humour that I wish I could capture. The concept is so simple that it is ingenious – bad boys in a bad boys camp, digging holes for their punishment. Except the boys aren’t bad, the wardens are bad. And why are they digging holes exactly? Could the wardens be looking for something? And just when you are beginning to relax into the story, Sachar throws in some Wild West shenanigans to keep you on your toes. I wish I had written Holes, and one day fifty years in the future, maybe I will. If I thought for a second that Sachar’s version wouldn’t become an unforgettable classic. Which it will. Ah well.
Holes by Louis Sachar is published by Bloomsbury (0 7475 4459 X, £5.99 pbk, 0 7475 6365 9, £3.99 pbk film tie-in edition).
Eoin Colfer’s latest book, Artemis Fowl: The Eternity Code (0 670 91352 9, £12.99 hbk) is published by Puffin.