Study Guide

Holes Chapter 16

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Chapter 16

  • After they've arrived back at camp and taken their showers, the boys sit around in the wreck room, as they do. X-Ray is animated and energetic, but the rest of the boys are exhausted.
  • The next day, the so-far-so-scary Warden joins them at the dig site again. She seems even more anxious than the day before, quickly becoming impatient that nothing else has been found.
  • Stanley, ever the detective, tries to figure out what that gold tube was: it looked familiar to him, but he can't quite pinpoint what it reminds him of.
  • That day, the Warden makes the boys dig long after they would usually be finished. Ugh.
  • Later, back at camp, Mr. Pendanski brings Stanley a letter. Squid and Armpit tease Stanley, asking if the letter is from his mom but X-Ray tells the boys to leave Stanley alone. Looks like someone's got a bodyguard.
  • After the other boys go to dinner, Stanley reads the letter: it is from his mother, as upbeat and encouraging as ever. She even makes a joke about the odor from Stanley's father's experiments making their apartment smell like the house of the little old lady who lived in a shoe. Yum. In any case, it makes Stanley chuckle, and we're happy to see this.
  • Stanley realizes Zero hasn't gone to dinner with the other boys only when Zero asks him why he is laughing. When Stanley tells him about his mom's joke, Zero doesn't seem to understand: turns out he's never heard the nursery rhyme. Travesty, we do declare!

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