Saturday, May 29, 2010

Blimpo: The Third Circle of Heck Dale E. Basye

Blimpo: The Third Circle of Heck by Dale E. Basye
Blimpo the third circle of heck is where the overweight kids go. 11 yr old Milton and 13 yr old Marlo Fauster have already been introduced to Heck and seen the second circle Rapacia.

Milton has escaped from Heck, he snuck back in it to save his sister, Marlo and his friend Virgil. Milton must hide from principal Bea "Elsa" Bubb. The principal is out to get Milton because he's escaped from Heck twice and it doesn't make her look good. Milton is getting some help from the Phantoms of the Dispossessed or PODs. The PODs can't be classified so they wander through Heck. The leader of the POD's is Jack Kerouac

Milton sneaks into Blimpo because that's where Virgil is. The kids in Blimpo are forced to run on dreadmills, they are a new source of energy. Elvis Presley is the music teacher. Marlo is starting an Infernship for the Guy downstairs. In this book Marlo and Milton don't see each until close to the end. The chapters alternate between the siblings.

I like that the author decided to separate Miltion and Marlo. This way we get a better feel for their individual personalities and get to see more of Heck. Marlo and Milton are both have different perspectives thanks to their time in Heck. This is a very smart series. I appreciate the growth, even Virgil is changed by being in Blimpo.

I loved Blimpo as much as Heck. I enjoyed Rapicia, just don't think its as strong as the other two. Blimpo moves very well. There are some great visually creepy moments.

"Suddenly, a scream pealed from the mist shrouded herd of bewliderbeasts. In the blink of an eye, a swooping shape had attached itself to the creature charging toward Milton. The bewilderbeast screeched, the unmistakable shriek of something about to be killed. Nothing was as frightening Milton thought in the abrupt silence of the creature's scream, than some terrible creature terrified by something even more terrible."

Basye is doing an excellent job of keeping this series funny, entertaining, exciting and thought- provoking. One thing I really like, each book answers the initial questions it set out to answers. As the series continues its getting more involved, in a very good way.

There are a few famous people - Kerouac, Elvis and Nixon (the ethics teacher) in Heck, that adults will get a kick out. Though its always about the young reader. The author seamlessly adds in these names. So if a young reader doesn't know who any of these people are its not big deal.

I think Blimpo would work well as a stand alone. Though I highly recommend starting this series from the beginning. They would make a book club selection.
Read an excerpt


Kate Coombs said...

Doret--I've only read the first one. Thanks for the review. Now I want to track down #2 and #3 both!

Doret said...

Kate - I think you'll enjoy them.