Heck: Where the Bad Kids Go

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Heck: Where the Bad Kids Go
Heck Where the Bad Kids Go.jpg
AuthorDillon Heck Booher
IllustratorBob Dob
Country United States
SeriesCircles of Heck
PublisherRandom House,[1] Yearling
Publication date
July 22, 2008
Media typeHardcover
Followed byRapacia: The Second Circle of Heck

Heck: Where the Bad Kids Go is a 2008 juvenile novel by Dale E. Basye, with jacket and interior illustrations by Bob Dob. It is published by Random House. The books feature many puns and allusions.


One day, the nerdy Milton Fauster and his kleptomaniac sister Marlo are in the Grizzly Mall of Generica, Kansas. They go into a store and Milton unwittingly steals some lip gloss.

As Marlo and Milton are running through the mall with the security guard chasing them, Milton realizes Marlo tricked him into stealing lip gloss. They take a break for a moment and they stop in front of a giant marshmallow model of a Grizzly Bear, and Milton sees Damian Ruffino, his extremely unhygienic tormentor and bully at school. He is sticking some dynamite in the marshmallow Grizzly Bear Statue's behind.

Before the mall security guards can catch up with them, the marshmallow Grizzly Bear explodes and Milton and Marlo both die. Damian also dies. The last thing they see is flaming marshmallow all over the mall. Now, Milton and Marlo are holding hands and plummeting downward and Milton feels a slight sting. He and Marlo land, and they found themselves in a terrible school in Limbo where the principal Bea "Elsa" Bubb torments them with things they wish they could have. But, Damian is getting the special treatment.

Classes include home-ec class with Lizzie Borden, ethics with Richard Nixon, and gym with Blackbeard the Pirate. The children are terrified. They now find themselves in Limbo, the waiting area for the Nine Circles of Heck, which include Rapacia, Blimpo, Precocia, Sadia, Snivel, Fibble, Lipptor (Wise Acres), and Dupli-City. When Milton meets Virgil, his new best friend, they and Marlo plan an escape to return to Earth, instead of spending the rest of their lives tormented in Heck.[2]

Each book in the series deals with a realm of the afterlife of Heck.[3]


"Parents and readers ages 9-13 who don't mind theological liberties being taken with the hereafter are in for a treat with Dale E. Basye's very funny debut novel."[4]

"In this entertaining tale, style counts for more than plot, but readers will nonetheless cheer when Milton -- rather than being demoralized by the ghastly 1970s tunes piped into the hellish Heck -- is inspired by one of them to stage the most daring breakout in . . . eternity."[5]

Subsequent Books in the Series[edit]

Animated adaptation[edit]

An animated series based on Heck: Where the Bad Kids Go is currently in development with The Gault Shop.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Gurdon, Meghan Cox (2008-07-26). "Heck: Where the Bad Kids Go". Wall Street Journal. p. W9.
  2. ^ Basye, Dale E.; Heck: Where the Bad Kids Go; Yearling; New York, NY; 2008. ISBN 03-758-407-61
  3. ^ «««««Circles of Heck»»»»»*Limbo: First place where kids arrive after they die, where their souls are weighed and assessed. *Rapacia: Where the greedy kids go. *Blimpo: Where the fat kids go.*Fibble: Where the lying kids go.*Snivel: Where the whiny kids go.*Precocia: Where the smarty-pants kids that grow up too fast go.*Lipptor (Wise Acres): Where the sassy kids go.*Sadia: Where the bullies go.*Dupli-City: Where the back-stabbing kids go.
  4. ^ Wall Street Journal, Book Review, July 26, 2008
  5. ^ [Ibid.]

External links[edit]