I received the previous two books (The Teenage Years and A Fiend in Need) as a Christmas present a year ago and I absolutely loved reading them and howling with laughter. With 'The Eternal Detention' I am restricting myself to just 2 chapters before bedtime simply because I do not want to finish reading the book too quickly. This trilogy has to be the maddest and funniest books I have read for a very long time. The only thing I am gutted about is this book is MUCH shorter that the previous ones. The curse of a thousand guffs be upon Jamie Thomson.
My 9 year old son has devoured this fantastic series in the space of just a few weeks. Witnessing him following the misadventures of 'Dirk Lloyd' (think the Dark Lord Sauron regressed to his teenage years and ... trapped in high school) has been a real pleasure as he has laughed out loud, read his favourite bits out to us and been 'caught' still reading long after lights- out ! They have clearly given him a lot of pleasure and I heartily recommend them for 'kids of all ages' (as they say). My turn next in fact, once his Mum has finished the book !
The first two books in the Dark Lord trilogy were hugely entertaining, and the third concluding part does not disappoint. It follows on neatly from 'A Fiend in Need' with a new and altogether more dire threat to Dirk and his friends. The characters feel well rounded and familiar by now and this story does not shy away from making all of them more complex. The story progresses along an exciting pace and feels well thought out. As before there is occasional use esoteric phrases, but that fits in with the Dirk character and taps in to the fantasy vibe. Besides children need to learn new things and delight in repeating new strange phrases that they pick up.
My favourite aspect of all the books is the exploration of the nature of good and evil. My own children usually talk in terms of 'goodies' and 'baddies', as kids do. Dark Lord really digs deep in to this and shows how people are not just good/evil, instead it's all about your actions and how they affect people. It's not subtle, for adults at least, but it is clear, though provoking and above all funny. In fact I think the way these books explore this theme they should be made key reading in RE/PSCHE lessons in schools. My 7yr old has a greater understanding of this now (and I can think of some firebrand US politicians that could do with learning some things from this!).
So back to Eternal Detention - funny, thought provoking, exciting, and a damn fine read. In the same vein of family animated movies these days it's something adults will enjoy as much as the kids they are reading with. If I have one criticism it's that it's too short. Quite a bit shorter than the first two and as a result the story feels a little hurried (I almost dropped a star for that). It has a feel of a book that's had a publishers editorial knife to it. Do they feel that kids don't get a sense of satisfaction from longer books? Or that big books scare them off? Is it to save paper and shipping costs? Luckily it's still a damn fine story enjoyable from ages 7 to 70. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!
Dirk's nemesis, the white wizard Hasdruban, has travelled to our world in pursuit of his foe. Worse, he's Dirk's new headmaster! The action hots up as Dirk must find a way back to the Darklands where he will find the key to resolving their ancient battle once and for all. But never mind saving the world, Sooz is setting up a Goth rock band with Gargon and the paladin Rufino. Lordi lord.
This is a perfect blend of laughs, thrills and fabulous imagination that will entertain and inspire kids and adults alike. But is it really the last of Dirk's adventures? I hope not!
Exellent,breath-taking,brill and every person should read it .Old or young,fast or slow, keen or not on reading.It is by far one of the best books I have ever read.It is an unique idea to put Saron,voldemort and all of the other dark lords into one high lord of the dark and banish him to earth in the body of a thirteen year old boy
A book so brilliantly wrote might well be put in a museum as art it's that good! Made me laugh quite lot and made me sad and other various emotions you humans feel... perhaps I will one come to terms with these 'emotions' but seriously, if you don't read this I'll cast of the cantrip of uncontrollable flatulence! MWAH HAH HAH!!!!!!!!!!
PS if you find any book better than this then you need to alert the authorities because that would be dangerous and in the hands of hasdruban... yeah you get the picture. :-)
Best set of books since we ran out of Mr Gum books. My son absolutely loves these books and has even built Dark Lord lego figures and castle! His friends are now reading the books and equally delighted. Fills a gulf left by Mr Gum and maybe even surpasses it