The story of Elya and Madame Zeroni has many elements of a classic fairy-tale, making the novel resemble a fable. A classic fable is a brief story told to illustrate a moral point. Holes is far more lengthy than a fable and there are many morals that result from the narration, but many of the characteristics are similar. Madame Zeroni's instructions of how to take care of the pig have the ring of a magic spell, complete with water that runs uphill. The entire idea of a curse is typical of a fable or fairy tale, and the way that the curse follows Stanley's family for generations is reminiscent of how the witch in Snow White punishes Snow White and her family for hundreds of years simply because they neglected to invite her to a party. The morals in Holes involve keeping promises, evaluating people based on more than one impression, and many other themes that will be revealed in later chapters.