Louis Sachar

Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Edition on Holes can help.

Stanley Yelnats

Stanley is the fourteen-year-old protagonist of the novel, who has been wrongfully imprisoned at a labor camp in Texas for stealing a famous athlete’s sneakers. Before his wrongful conviction, Stanley was an overweight and extremely… read analysis of Stanley Yelnats

Zero/Hector Zeroni

Zero is the smallest boy in Group D. He's black and is often scowling and angry-looking, though Stanley notices that when Zero smiles, his smile seems too big for his face. Zero is the only… read analysis of Zero/Hector Zeroni

The Warden

The Warden, the novel's villain, owns and runs Camp Green Lake in the Texas desert. She's a tall, red-haired woman who is soft spoken but nasty: she knows that she's the most powerful person at… read analysis of The Warden

Miss Katherine/Kissin' Kate Barlow

In 1880s Green Lake, Miss Katherine was the town’s beloved schoolteacher. She was beautiful, charming, and an exceptional educator, and so she was beloved by children, parents, and her adult students alike. She also won… read analysis of Miss Katherine/Kissin' Kate Barlow

Elya Yelnats

Elya is referred to as Stanley's “no-good-dirty-rotten-pig-stealing-great-great-grandfather.” He's responsible for cursing the Yelnats family after he broke a promise to his friend Madame Zeroni. Elya is described as being a kind, if somewhat idealistic… read analysis of Elya Yelnats
Get the entire Holes LitChart as a printable PDF.
Holes PDF

Madame Zeroni

In the present, Madame Zeroni is described as a "Gypsy woman;" in reality, Madame Zeroni was Egyptian. In mid-1800s Latvia, she was an elderly woman and was good friends with Elya Yelnats. When Elya… read analysis of Madame Zeroni


Sam is the black onion seller in 1880s Green Lake. He touts the healing powers of onions, citing his donkey Mary Lou as evidence: he claims that she's nearly 50 and never gets sick because… read analysis of Sam

Mr. Sir

Mr. Sir is a nasty middle manager at Camp Green Lake. He's especially grumpy because, when Stanley arrives, Mr. Sir has recently quit smoking; instead, he eats sunflower seeds by the bag. His favorite catchphrase… read analysis of Mr. Sir

Mr. Pendanski

Mr. Pendanski is the Tent D counselor. He's relatively young and wears a buzz cut, but he also has a thick curly beard. The Tent D boys refer to him as “Mom,” which he allows… read analysis of Mr. Pendanski

Charles "Trout" Walker

Charles Walker is the eligible bachelor of the richest family in 1880s Green Lake. He's most often referred to as Trout Walker; the nickname comes from his feet, which are afflicted with an incurable foot… read analysis of Charles "Trout" Walker

Clyde Livingston

Clyde "Sweet Feet" Livingston is a famous baseball player. He also suffers from an incurable foot fungus that makes his feet smell like dead fish. Despite this, he donates an old pair of his shoes… read analysis of Clyde Livingston

Zero's Mother

Though Zero's mother is described as being quite young, she looks older than she is and as though she's seen a number of unpleasant things in her life. Zero begins to tell Stanley about… read analysis of Zero's Mother

Stanley's Father

Stanley's father is the third Stanley Yelnats. He's an inventor, though his inventions are never very successful. He claims not to believe in the family curse but he also regularly blames mishaps on Elyaread analysis of Stanley's Father

The Sheriff

The sheriff is a racist and powerful man in 1880s Green Lake. He's prepared to hang Sam for kissing Miss Katherine, and he drunkenly bullies Miss Katherine to try to get her to kiss… read analysis of The Sheriff

The First Stanley Yelnats

The first Stanley was the son of Elya Yelnats and Sarah Miller. He made his fortune in the stock market on the east coast in the mid-late 1800s, went west with a valuable suitcase… read analysis of The First Stanley Yelnats


X-Ray is a small boy in Tent D. Despite his size, he's the leader of the group and is always first in line for water. Though he allows others to believe that he got his… read analysis of X-Ray/Rex


Zigzag is one of the boys in Tent D. He's white and one of the tallest at camp, though this is mostly because his neck is exceptionally long. He takes a great deal of offense… read analysis of Zigzag/Ricky

Stanley's Mother

Stanley's mother insists there's no family curse, though she also can't ignore the fact that things go wrong for her family often. While Stanley is at Camp Green Lake, he and his mother write letters… read analysis of Stanley's Mother

Myra Menke

Myra is the object of Elya Yelnats's affection in mid-1800s Latvia. Though she's exceptionally beautiful, Madame Zeroni describes her as being "as empty as a flower pot." Elya eventually discovers that this is true… read analysis of Myra Menke

Myra's Father

Myra Menke's father wishes to marry her off when she turns fifteen. He doesn't much care whom she marries; he simply wants a fat pig in return. This leads him to consider Igor Barkov and… read analysis of Myra's Father

Igor Barkov

Igor is a 57-year-old pig farmer in mid-1800s Latvia. Like Elya, he wishes to marry Myra Menke and he promises Myra's father a fat pig as a bride price. He agrees with Myra's father… read analysis of Igor Barkov

Sarah Miller

Elya Yelnats marries Sarah Miller not long after he immigrates to the United States in the mid-1800s. She can think for herself and has a number of practical skills. She doesn't fully buy Elya's story… read analysis of Sarah Miller

Ms. Morengo

Ms. Morengo is technically a patent lawyer, but she also represents Stanley. Stanley's father is able to hire her after experiencing a breakthrough in his invention to cure foot odor. Ms. Morengo is a… read analysis of Ms. Morengo
Minor Characters
Doc Hawthorn
Doc Hawthorn is the doctor in 1880s Green Lake. Residents of Green Lake seek out both Doc Hawthorn's services as well as Sam's onion potions, and neither man is bothered by this arrangement. Doc Hawthorn himself uses an onion cream for balding.
Linda Walker
Linda Walker is Trout Walker's wife. Though Kate remembers Linda as one of her former students (and a pleasant one), after her marriage, Linda becomes just as cold and mean as her husband.
Squid is one of the boys in Tent D. When Stanley is released from Camp Green Lake, Squid asks him to call his mother and relay to her that he's sorry, using his given name, Alan.
Magnet is a Mexican boy in Tent D. He implies that he was arrested for theft, and he steals Mr. Sir's sunflower seeds at camp. During one of Mr. Pendanski's conversations, Magnet suggests he'd like to train animals for movies.
Aside from Stanley, Armpit is the biggest boy in Tent D. He's often angry and can be violent.
Mrs. Tennyson
A woman in Green Lake who thanks Sam for curing her daughter with onions.
Barf Bag
The boy whose place Stanley takes at Camp Green Lake. He left the camp and was hospitalized because he purposefully stepped on a rattlesnake.
A boy assigned to Tent D to take Zero's place. His real name is Brian and he was arrested for stealing a car.
The Guard
The guard accompanies Stanley to Camp Green Lake.
The Bus Driver
The driver who takes Stanley to Camp Green Lake. He cautions Stanley to be careful.
Hattie Parker
The woman in Green Lake who saw Sam and Miss Katherine kissing and then spread the news.
The Attorney General
The Texas Attorney General accompanies Ms. Morengo to pick up Stanley from Camp Green Lake. He's tall and wears a cowboy hat.
Derrick Dunne
Stanley's bully at home. Because Derrick is small, the teachers don't take his bullying seriously.