Freefall by: Roderick Gordon and Brian Williams, Scholastic Books, New York, 2010. This is the third in the series by Roderick Gordon and Brian Williams about Will’s ventures to the center of the earth. This time they actually fall to the very center, and discover a new world and sun inside the earth—on earth on the surface, and another in the center of the earth. He and his father and Elliott have come this far to make sure the evil twins Rebecca 1 and Rebecca 2 are out of action, as well as the phial of deadly toxin contained. This is a real war against the Styx, a sinister race of thin, super muscular beings.
The Styx win a battle in that they get Will’s mother, and extract everything from her brain using the black light torture device. They are looking for whatever she knows about the resistance group lead by Drake. She resists, so they are forced to use higher settings, and get what they want, even though it means she will likely die. At the end of this book she is on the brink of death. There are a couple of Styx who are half revolting. One saved Drake, as he is the father of a young woman Drake saved. The other is a guard, who takes Will's mother home, to nurse her.
This book is less claustrophobic than the first book, unless you dwell on the part of the story of their being in the center of the world. They have air, and vegetation, and a sun (too hot) and space. They can’t even see the ceiling, so it appears to be a regular world. There just are no people, except they do catch up with those evil twins. It also appears there is no way out.