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Wow, it’s already almost 3 o’clock here and I have yet to post our Fiction Friday. Again, it’s still Jae’s fault…<mutter Korean drama mutter> But in the interest of not having Kati challenge me to a death match at Judo tomorrow, I’m actually pausing episode 10. Yes, pausing it, right in the middle, to share my review with all you fine folks. And if that’s not dedication, I don’t know what is.

So, moving ahead, I recently read Louis Sachar’s “Holes” for the first time. Yes, I know it’s a classic and I can’t believe it took me this long to get to it, but don’t make the same mistake I made – if you haven’t checked out this little gem yet I highly, highly recommend you go pick it up. It’s a delightful story of friendship, redemption, and boys forced to dig holes in the desert with poisonous reptiles. Along the way there are also tales of the magical properties of onions, infamous kissing bandits, and family curses that may or may not be real.

The main character, Stanley, is a very sympathetic hero. He has terrible luck, all thanks to his no-good-dirty-rotten-pig-stealing-great-great-grandfather. At the start of the book, Stanley is heading into Camp Green Lake, which is neither green nor wet – it’s instead a wide expanse of hot, blistering nothing. Stanley, along with all the other juvenile delinquents in the camp, are forced to dig large holes every day, supposedly to build character, although Stanley quickly comes to suspect they are actually looking for something.

Enter the Warden, a villain who paints her nails with rattlesnake venom and will do whatever it takes to get…something. I’m not going to tell you what – you’ll have to read it for yourself. But I will tell you I loved this villain. I’m always happy to see a truly evil female villain in a story, and I could totally picture the Warden and Umbridge chatting together over a pot of tea. Yes, she’s that evil.

Other things I liked about the book? There are storylines woven in about Stanley’s ancestors, and you can see Stanley himself undergoing change and character growth in a way that feels natural and not at all preachy or contrived. In short, I loved every minute of this book, and hope you will, too.

How about you? Any classic MG you’d recommend?