Johnny's in the Basement
First p/b edition
Avon Books (p/b)
Johnny's in the Basement is a children's novel by the author Louis Sachar, the author of the National Book Award and Newbery Medal winning novel, Holes. This book was published in 1981, by Knopf. It is Sachar's second book (Sideways Stories from Wayside School was his first, in 1979). The book's title is a reference to the song "Subterranean Homesick Blues" by Bob Dylan, which begins with the line "Johnny's in the basement mixing up the medicine."
Reviewers consider the book "full of sly humor," and "another corker" It is also described as "a preadolescent way to show contempt for adults' exploitation." Eventually they[who?] remade the book in 2004 with the same plot. A film named Johnny's in the Basement was planned, but it was canceled on May 2, 2003.
Johnny, who has just turned 11 years old, goes in the basement where nobody bothers him. His parents want him to grow up and go to dance class. They also want Johnny to get rid of his bottle cap collection. At dance class Johnny meets a girl named Valerie who also hates dance class, but likes Johnny. Johnny sells his bottle cap collection, and he and Valerie spend the $86.33 they receive for it on miscellaneous impractical items.
- Bernice E. Cullinan, Diane Goetz Person, "Sachar" Continuum Encyclopedia of Children's Literature New York : Continuum, 2005 Google Books excerpt
- Barbara Strickland, "Louis Sachar: Top of His Class" Austin Chronicle Feb 20, 1999 
- Jean Nash Johnson, "The kids dig him" Dallas Morning News February 9, 2003 Newsbank
- WorldCat book listing
- Joan McGrath, Emergency Librarian, cited in: "Louis Sacher, Biographical Essay," Authors and Artists for Young Adults, Volume 35. Gale Group, 2000. access from Austin Public Library
- Publisher's Weekly, cited in: "Louis Sacher, Biographical Essay," Authors and Artists for Young Adults, Volume 35. Gale Group, 2000. access from Austin Public Library
- Jack Forman, School Library Journal, cited in: "Louis Sacher, Biographical Essay," Authors and Artists for Young Adults, Volume 35. Gale Group, 2000. access from Austin Public Library
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2015-10-05. Retrieved 2017-11-05.