by Louis Sachar
Character Role Analysis
Zero? A guide? Yes, dear Shmoopers, we think so. Although he may be more vulnerable – and definitely more alone – than Stanley, Zero is the guy who brings out the inner-hero in Stanley. His friendship with Zero is what lights a fire under Stanley: it makes him finally get off his duff and actually do something. So even though Zero may not be an intentional guide, he definitely plays the part.