Julia Eccleshare, our very own editorial expert as well as Children's Books Editor of the Guardian says of Louis:
Best-selling author Louise Sachar took the world by storm with Holes, his remarkable story about a group of boys in a reform camp. But he deserves to be just as famous and popular for his many other books which display his hallmark qualities of warmth, empathy and understanding of all kinds of young readers but especially those whose lives have gone a bit awry. Young readers are immediately attracted to Louis Sachar’s novels for his great and unusual stories and for his exceptional understanding of some of the challenges of growing up.
Louis Sachar was born on 20 March 1954, in East Meadow, New York. In 1976, he went to the University of California, where he studied economics. While at university he became a teacher’s aide to gain extra credit; it turned out to be his favourite class and inspired him to write children's books. After graduation he worked in a sweater warehouse in Connecticut and wrote at night. After he was fired from that job he moved on to law school. In his first week of study, Sideways Stories from Wayside was published. After completing his studies in 1980 he became a part-time lawyer but was compelled to concentrate on his writing full-time.
Louis now lives in Austin, Texas, where he writes and plays quite a lot of bridge. His novel Holes has sold over 8 million copies worldwide and has been made into a major motion picture of the same name by Disney. Louis is the recipient of many of the world's most prestigious book prizes, including the National Book Award and the Newbery Award. Holes was also selected as the first Liverpool City Read title and won the Sheffield Book Award in the UK.
Author photo credit © Perry Hagopian
June 2010 Book of the Month. Best-selling author Louis Sachar took the world by storm with Holes, his remarkable story about a group of boys in a reform camp. But he deserves to be just as famous and popular for his many other books which display his hallmark qualities of warmth, empathy and understanding of all kinds of young readers but especially those whose lives have gone a bit awry. Young readers are immediately attracted to Louis Sachar’s novels for his great and unusual stories and for his exceptional understanding of some of the challenges of growing up.
Bestselling and Newbery Medal-winning author Louis Sachar knows how to make readers laugh. And there are laughs galore in the classic Wayside School series!All three books in the Wayside School series are now available together in this ebook collection, complete with hilarious stories, zany art, and a triple serving of wackiness!More than nine millions readers have laughed at the wacky stories of Sideways Stories from Wayside School; Wayside School Gets a Little Stranger; and Wayside School Is Falling Down. So what are you waiting for? Come visit Wayside School!
If you go down to the woods today ... Well, every child knows NOT to, don't they? Tamaya is on a scholarship to the prestigious Woodridge Academy and every day she and seventh-grader Marshall walk to school together. They never go through the woods. And when they arrive at school they stop talking to each other - because Marshall can't be seen to be friends with a little kid like Tamaya. Especially not with Chad around. Chad-the-bully, who makes Marshall's life utterly miserable. But today, hoping to avoid Chad, Marshall and Tamaya decide to go through the woods ... And what is waiting there for them is strange, sinister and entirely unexpected. The next day, Chad doesn't turn up at school - no one knows where he is, not even his family. And Tamaya's arm is covered in a horribly, burning, itchy wound. As two unlikely heroes set out to rescue their bully, the town is about to be turned upside down by the mysterious Fuzzy Mud ... A funny, sinister and thought-provoking comic thriller from the multimillion-copy selling author of Holes and There's a Boy in the Girls' Bathroom.
Give me a dollar or I'll spit on you. Meet Bradley Chalkers. He's the oldest child in the class. He tells ENORMOUS lies. He picks fights with girls. The teachers say he has `serious behaviour problems'. And no one likes him ... Except Carla, the new school counsellor. She thinks Bradley is sensitive and generous, and she even enjoys his far-fetched stories. Carla knows that Bradley could change, if only he weren't afraid to try. Sometimes the hardest thing in the world is believing in yourself. A heartwarming story of isolation, bravery and acceptance from the bestselling author of Holes, Louis Sachar.
From the author of the acclaimed bestseller Holes, winner of the Newbery Award and the National Book Award, comes a new middle-grade novel with universal appeal. Combining horror-movie suspense with the issues of friendship, bullying, and the possibility of ecological disaster, this novel will intrigue, surprise, and inspire readers and compel them to think twice about how they treat others as well as their environment.Be careful. Your next step may be your last.Fifth grader Tamaya Dhilwaddi and seventh grader Marshall Walsh have been walking to and from Woodridge Academy together since elementary school. But their routine is disrupted when bully Chad Hilligaschallenges Marshall to a fight. To avoid the conflict, Marshall takes a shortcut home through the off-limits woods. Tamaya, unaware of the reason for the detour,reluctantly follows. They soon get lost. And then they find trouble. Bigger trouble than anyone could ever have imagined.In the days and weeks that follow, the authorities and the U.S. Senate become involved, and what they uncover might affect the future of the world.Cast List:Jonathan Fitzman, read by Jesse BernsteinSenator Haltings, read by Mark BramhallSenator Foote, read by Robertson DeanSenator March, read by Kimberly FarrDr. Peter Smythe, read by Stephen HoyeSenator Wright, read by John H. Mayer Tamaya Dhilwaddi, read by Kathleen McInerneyDonna Jones, esq., read by Adenrele OjoDr. June Lee, read by Samantha QuanProfessor Alice Mayfair, read by Allyson RyanDr. Marc Humbard, read by Bruce Turk"e;Can Virtue Be Taught,"e; read by Louis Sacher
Stanley Yelnats' family has a history of bad luck, so when a miscarriage of justice sends him to Camp Green Lake Juvenile Detention Centre (which isn't green and doesn't have a lake) he is not surprised. Every day he and the other inmates are told to dig a hole, five foot wide by five foot deep, reporting anything they find. The evil warden claims that it is character building, but this is a lie and Stanley must dig up the truth. Wonderfully inventive, compelling and hilarious, Louis Sachar has created a masterpiece. This multi-million bestseller now in an exciting new package ahead of the publication of Sachar's newest 9-11 fiction title Fuzzy Mud (publishing August 2015)
Meet Marvin Redpost, the Master of Mayhem!Kidnapped at Birth?: Marvin Redpost has finally figured out why he doesn't look like anyone in his family. He's not really Marvin Redposthe's Robert, the lost prince of Shampoon! Why Pick on Me?: Marvin is shunned by his classmates and teacher after he is unfairly fingered as a nose-picker by the class bully. Is He a Girl?: Will kissing his elbow really turn Marvin into a girl? Casey Happleton claims it's so. Alone in His Teacher's House: Marvin's friends think he's the luckiest boy in the world when his teacher asks him to dog-sit for a week. But pretty soon it starts to look as if Marvin is not so lucky after all.... Class President: It's "e;hole day,"e; and even Mrs. North and Principal McCabe are wearing their very worst clothes. It seemed like a fun idea that morning, but now the president of the United States is on his way! And there's no time to change! A Flying Birthday Cake: Marvin and Stuart get to sleep over in Nick Tuffle's backyard for Nick's birthday. Marvin he hears a noise in the night, and something glowing zooms over his head. The next day, a very strange new kid shows up at school. Super Fast, Out of Control!: The word at school is that Marvin will be taking on Suicide Hill with his new mountain bike. But the truth is, he can barely climb on the seat! A Magic Crystal?: Casey Happleton shows Marvin the magic crystal she has just found and offers to give Marvin a few wishes. Is the crystal really magic? Or is it too good to be true?
When Alton's ageing, blind uncle asks him to attend bridge games with him, he agrees. After all, it's better than a crappy summer job in the local shopping mall, and Alton's mother thinks it might secure their way to a good inheritance sometime in the future. But, like all apparently casual choices in any of Louis Sachar's wonderful books, this choice soon turns out to be a lot more complex than Alton could ever have imagined. As his relationship with his uncle develops, and he meets the very attractive Toni, deeply buried secrets are uncovered and a romance that spans decades is finally brought to conclusion. Alton's mother is in for a surprise!
'Watch closely,' said Mrs Jewls. 'You can learn much faster using a computer instead of paper and pencil.' Then she pushed the computer out of the window. The children all watched it fall thirty floors. 'See?' said Mrs Jewls. 'That's gravity ...' That's the way things happen at Wayside School. There are twenty-nine kids in Mrs Jewls' class and this book is about all of them: there is Todd, who is in trouble every day, until he gets a magic dog; Paul, whose life is saved by Leslie's pigtails; Ron, who dares to try the cafeteria's mushroom surprise; and all the others who help turn a day at Wayside School into one madcap adventure after another.
Welcome back to maths class at Wayside School. How much is PEPPERS + PIG LIPS? If Jenny's shirt has sparkles on it, will Todd have egg in his hair? These Sideways Arithmetic problems may look puzzling at first, but you can use real maths to solve them, and the answers are perfectly logical. There are lots of clues and hints, plus all the answers are right there in the book. Best of all, the children you have read about in the other books about Wayside School are here to help you! Try solving these, and more than fifty other maths brainteasers, along with the kids from Mrs. Jewls' class. You'll learn a lot about maths but you'll be laughing too much to notice!
There has been a terrible mistake. Wayside School was supposed to have been built with thirty classrooms all next to each other in a row. Instead it was built with the thirty classrooms all on top of each other - thirty storeys high! That may be why all kinds of strange stuff happens at Wayside School. Especially on the thirtieth floor. It is a school full of unusual characters too. Mrs Gorf, the meanest teacher in the world. Terrible Todd who always gets sent home early. John who can only read upside down. It is a crazy mixed-up school, brilliantly brought to life by the irresistible Louis Sachar.
All the kids from Wayside School had to spend 243 days in horrible schools while Wayside was closed to get rid of the infestation of cows! Now the kids are back and the fun begins again on every floor. Miss Mush has prepared a special lunch of baked liver in purple sauce and it is pet day on the 30th floor. There are dogs and cats and frogs and skunks and an orange named Fido, causing a terrible commotion. But the biggest surprise of all is that Mrs Jewls is expecting a baby and a substitute teacher is coming, and everyone knows what that means ...Wayside School is going to get a little stranger.
Marvin cannot get to sleep. It's late, the ground is hard in Nick Tuffle's garden, he is far too full on cake and he has drunk too much punch. Then he hears a low humming noise. He feels the earth shudder beneath him and there is a bright flash - sort of the same colour as the green icing on Nick's birthday cake. Is he dreaming or was that a flying birthday cake, candles aglow? Perhaps something much stranger is on the horizon...
Marvin is amazed when he goes home with Casey Happleton one day after school and discovers that she lives in an old fire station. But that's not all that surprises him. Casey has a secret she wants to share - a crystal with super magical powers. A crystal that makes all your wishes come true. Can it be real or could she be casting her own spell on him?
Today is Thursday. Today is 'hole' day. So, naturally, everyone is wearing their 'holiest' clothes. Even the class teacher, Mrs North ...But she is soon to find out from Principal McCabe that a surprise visitor is coming to the school. In fact, the President of the United States is on his way. And there's no time to change! What questions will Marvin get to ask the President? And, with all the television cameras pointed, will he solve his biggest maths problem to date? This book is full of surprises but, yet again, Louis Sachar delivers a thoughtful and vibrantly funny story in this, the fifth of the series.
Suicide Hill is the ultimate test of bravery. Few have conquered the treacherously steep slope without completely wiping out - or so the legend goes. And rumour has it that Marvin will be taking it on. Only Marvin isn't so sure. His new mountain bike is enormous - he can barely climb up on to it. And changing gears is out of the question! But will he have to ride down Suicide Hill in order to prove himself to his classmates? If he succeeds he will be a hero. If he doesn't, then everyone is about to witness the biggest wipeout ever.
When Alton's ageing, blind uncle asks him to attend bridge games with him, he agrees. After all, it's better than a crappy summer job in the local shopping mall, and Alton's mother thinks it might secure their way to a good inheritance sometime in the future. But, like all apparently casual choices in any of Louis Sachar's wonderful books, this choice soon turns out to be a lot more complex than Alton could ever have imagined. As his relationship with his uncle develops, and he meets the very attractive Toni, deeply buried secrets are uncovered and a romance that spans decades is finally brought to a conclusion. Alton's mother is in for a surprise!
From Louis Sachar, New York Times bestselling author and winner of the Newbery Medal for HOLES, comes the young adult novel THE CARDTURNER, an exploration of the human condition.How are we supposed to be partners? He can't see the cards and I don't know the rules!The summer after junior year of high school looks bleak for Alton Richards. His girlfriend has dumped him to hook up with his best friend. He has no money and no job. His parents insist that he drive his great-uncle Lester to his bridge club four times a week and be his cardturnerwhatever that means. Alton's uncle is old, blind, very sick, and very rich.But Alton's parents aren't the only ones trying to worm their way into Lester Trapp's good graces. They're in competition with his longtime housekeeper, his alluring young nurse, and the crazy Castaneda family, who seem to have a mysterious influence over him.Alton soon finds himself intrigued by his uncle, by the game of bridge, and especially by the pretty and shy Toni Castaneda. As the summer goes on, he struggles to figure out what it all means, and ultimately to figure out the meaning of his own life.Through Alton's wry observations, Louis Sachar explores the disparity between what you know and what you think you know. With his incomparable flair and inventiveness, he examines the elusive differences between perception and realityand inspires readers to think and think again.From the Hardcover edition.
Marvin Redpost is yet again caught in a dilemma. He's been told that he'll turn into a girl if he kisses his elbow, and after accidentally doing just that he wonders if it is really going to happen to him. His voice starts to change, he longs to have pigtails and he even dots his 'i's with a heart in class! What on earth has happened to Marvin, and will he ever be the same again? This is a charming story, which will give you lots of laughs. Louis Sachar has the ability to bring together the absurd and the real with the perfect ingredients to entertain all children aged 5 to 7 years.
While Mrs North, Marvin's teacher, is on holiday she asks him to look after Waldo - her dog. Suddenly, Marvin has become the luckiest boy in school. He'll get to sniff about Mrs North's house, look in her wardrobe, check out her bathroom and rummage in her fridge ...Well that's what Stuart and Nick, his best friends, would like to do. But Marvin takes things a little more seriously. After all, he gets paid $3 a day and he will get a bonus on top if everything goes smoothly. What could possibly go wrong? Just how long can Marvin hold on to his luck...Louis Sachar tells this tale with a refreshing and bold frankness and again the characters are vividly portrayed in this the fourth of the series.
Marvin lives in a grey house with a white fence - a white fence but for one red post. He has red hair and blue eyes. He is also left-handed. 'We're lucky to be left-handed', said Mrs North. 'It means we have royal blood'. One day, at school, while writing a report, Marvin realises that nothing adds up. His parents have brown hair and they have brown eyes. Can he really be Marvin Redpost? Or is he, in fact, the lost son of the King of Shampoon - Prince Robert? Was he whisked away from the hospital at birth and are the Redposts really his kidnappers? Marvin sets out to get things straight. There are a lot of perks to being a prince and it's all very tempting but Marvin soon realises that sometimes the truth isn't all it's cracked up to be. Louis Sachar writes with pace and humour and heart. In this, the first in a series of eight books, he introduces strong and memorable characters in his unique and inimitable style.
Everyone is laughing at Marvin Redpost. He's the grossest kid in school. Why? He picks his nose. Well, that's the rumour the class bully, Clarence, started and no one argues with Clarence - not even Marvin's so-called best friends. So what can Marvin do to turn things round? A great story which reveals that good things can often come out of bad.
'What was Pig City?' thought Laura. Soon it would be something that everyone wanted to be part of Laura Sibbie is trying to find the perfect 'pigs' for her new club, Pig City: classmates who can keep the biggest secret ever! But to make sure that none of them tells anyone else about the club, each one must give an 'insurance' - something totally embarrassing - to be hidden unless they break the most important law of Pig City. As Pig City grows and the 'pigs' rule the school, the 'insurances' get more daring and when hotshot Gabriel finds out about the club, life gets more risky for the 'pigs' and more complicated for Laura. Is something terrible going to happen? Now there is a new club around, Monkey Town, and they are going to turn Pig City upside down.
';Give me a dollar or I'll spit on you.'That's Bradley Chalkers for you. He's the oldest kid in the fifth grade. He tells enormous lies. He picks fights with girls, and the teachers say he has serious behavior problems. No one likes himexcept Carla, the new school counselor. She thinks Bradley is sensitive and generous, and she even enjoys his farfetched stories. Carla knows that Bradley could change, if only he weren't afraid to try.But when you feel like the most hated kid in the whole school, believing in yourself can be the hardest thing in the world. . . .
SIDEWAYS STORIES FROM WAYSIDE SCHOOLYou can imagine the confusion at Wayside School when the builder made a terrible mistake. Instead of building 30 classrooms side-by-side, he built them one on top of another. Maybe that accounts for the wacky goings-on in Mrs. Jewls' class. Where else will you find children being turned into apples, dead rats wearing raincoats, and little girls who try to sell their toes? WAYSIDE SCHOOL IS FALLING DOWN The teacher pushes the new computer out of the windowwhat's going on here? It's just a lesson on the laws of gravity. As the outrageous fun continues, the 29 children up on the 30th floor engage in one adventure after another, changing the school routine into something that is far from normal.WAYSIDE SCHOOL GETS A LITTLE STANGER Its been 243 days since Wayside School has been open for classes. Its taken that long to rid the place of all traces of the cows. When the students finally do return, you can bet all the craziness is back too, including a very strange counselor called Dr. Pickle who has a warped sense of humor. The really big surprises come when Mrs. Jewls leaves to have her baby and the kids get some wacky substitute teachers.From the Compact Disc edition.
Armpit and X-Ray are living in Austin, Texas. It is three years since they left the confines of Camp Green Lake Detention Centre and Armpit is taking small steps to turn his life around. He is working for a landscape gardener because he is good at digging holes, he is going to school and he is enjoying his first proper romance, but is he going to be able to stay out of trouble when there is so much building up against him? In this exciting novel, Armpit is joined by many vibrant new characters, and is learning what it takes to stay on course, and that doing the right thing is never the wrong choice.
CURSED! David was only trying to be cool when he helped some other boys steal an old lady's cane. But when the plan backfires, he is the one whom she 'curses'. Now David can't seem to do anything right. The cool kids taunt him and his only friends are weirdos. He even walks into Spanish class with his fly unzipped! And when he finally gets his nerve up to ask out a cute girl, his trousers fall down midway! But is this the curse at work or is David turning into a total loser? Another witty and very clever tale by the master storyteller Louis Sachar. Other titles in this series are THERE'S A BOY IN THE GIRLS' BATHROOM and DOGS DON'T TELL JOKES.
'Why did the guy eat two dead skunks for breakfast?' 'Because dead ones squeal when you stick the fork in.' Gary W. Boone knows he was born to be a stand-up comedian. It is the rest of the kids in the class who think he is a fool. Then the Floyd Hicks Junior High School Talent Show is announced, and he starts practising his routine non-stop to get it just right. Gary's sure that this will be his big break - he'll make everyone laugh and will win the $100 prize money. But when an outrageous surprise threatens to turn his debut into a disaster, it looks as if the biggest joke of all may be on Gary himself.
Angeline is brilliant! She knows way more than a child of her age ought to. When she is moved up a class at school she finds that her intelligence doesn't equip her entirely for dealing with the pressures of being with the older group. Soon she is finding refuge with a teacher and her tropical fish and another unlikely student. With Louis Sachar's hallmark twist-and-turns of plot and lovely humour, this delightful novel is thought-provoking and brilliant.
Winner of the Newbery Medal and the National Book Award! This #1New York Timesbestselling, modern classic in which boys are forced to dig holes day in and day out is now available with a splashy new look.Stanley Yelnats is under a curse. A curse that began with his no-good-dirty-rotten-pig-stealing-great-great-grandfather and has since followed generations of Yelnatses. Now Stanley has been unjustly sent to a boys' detention center, Camp Green Lake, where the boys build character by spending all day, every day digging holes exactly five feet wide and five feet deep. There is no lake at Camp Green Lake. But there are an awful lot of holes.It doesn't take long for Stanley to realize there's more than character improvement going on at Camp Green Lake. The boys are digging holes because the warden is looking for something. But what could be buried under a dried-up lake? Stanley tries to dig up the truth in this inventive and darkly humorous tale of crime and punishmentand redemption.Includes a double bonus: an excerpt fromSmall Steps,the follow-up toHoles,as well as an excerpt from Louis Sachar's new middle-grade novel,Fuzzy Mud."e;A smart jigsaw puzzle of a novel."e; --The New York TimesWINNER OF THEBOSTON GLOBE-HORN BOOKAWARDANEW YORK TIMESBOOK REVIEW NOTABLE CHILDREN'S BOOKSELECTED FOR NUMEROUS BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR AND ALA HONORSFrom the Paperback edition.
Two years after being released from Camp Green Lake, Armpit is home in Austin, Texas, trying to turn his life around. But its hard when you have a record, and everyone expects the worst from you. The only person who believes in him is Ginny, his 10-year old disabled neighbour. Together, they are learning to take small steps. And he seems to be on the right path, until X-Ray, a buddy from Camp Green Lake, comes up with a get-rich-quick scheme. This leads to a chance encounter with teen pop sensation, Kaira DeLeon, and suddenly his life spins out of control, with only one thing for certain. Hell never be the same again.In his first major novel since Holes, critically acclaimed novelist Louis Sachar uses his signature wit combined with a unique blend of adventure and deeply felt characters to explore issues of race, the nature of celebrity, the invisible connections that determine a persons life, and what it takes to stay on course. Doing the right thing is never a wrong choice but a small step in the right direction.From the Hardcover edition.
Armpit and X-Ray are living in Austin, Texas. It is three years since they left the confines of Camp Green Lake Detention Centre and Armpit is taking small steps to turn his life around. He is working for a landscape gardener because he is good at digging holes, he is going to school and he is enjoying his first proper romance, but is he going to be able to stay out of trouble when there is so much building up against him? In this brilliantly plotted and exciting novel, Armpit is joined by many vibrant new characters, and is learning what it takes to stay on course, and that doing the right thing is never the wrong choice.
Imagine your misfortune if, like Stanley Yelnats, you found yourself the victim of a miscarriage of justice and interned in Camp Green Lake Correctional Institute. How would you survive? Thoughtfully Louis Sachar has learnt his knowledge and expertise to the subject and created this wonderful, quirky, and utterly essential guide to toughing it out in the Texan desert. Spiced with lots of information about the characters in Holes , as well as lots of do's and don'ts for survival, this is an essential book for all those hundreds of thousands of Holes' fans.
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