I recently finished my Christmas Wish List and, just like the years before, this year’s list is full of books. To me, there isn’t a more beautiful sight than a stack of neatly wrapped books underneath the Christmas tree. Composing my wish list was relatively easy since the past three months have seen a large quantity of books published on all different facets of The Walt Disney Company — I love the vast subject diversity! There really is a book for every person’s area of interest. So, let’s look at some interesting titles you may want to add to your own list.
The Disneyland Book of Lists by Chris Strodder
Don’t let the title fool you — this book is much more than just lists! There is so much wonderful trivia crammed into this book’s 360 pages. The list format is very accessible and I found that it helped me retain some interesting tidbits of information. The book is organized into nine sections, each dealing with a specific aspect of Disneyland. For example, there are sections focusing on attractions, shops and restaurants and Disneyland by design. Strodder leaves no stone unturned while gathering his lists of facts and the reader surely benefits from his diligence. Expect to learn about the 13 license plates in Roger Rabbit’s Car Toon Spin, 47 different Disneyland parades, 14 owls throughout Disneyland and 22 books in City Hall’s bookcase. I find that reading this book in small sections allows for the facts to really seep in and I have learned an incredible amount about Walt Disney’s original theme park.
Murder in the Magic Kingdom by Annie Salisbury
Now, this book is very different from the normal Disney related books I gravitate too. I relish reading about Disney’s extensive history and personnel. However, when not reading about the mouse and I am a sucker for mysteries. I saw this title and thought I’d give it a chance. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this book. Written by a former Walt Disney World VIP Tour Guide, this book is full of Disney trivia and backstage intrigue. Roughly 135 pages long, Murder in the Magic Kingdom is a well-written mystery with clever characters and sudden plot twists. Best of all, I was able to suspend disbelief and truly felt that the events in the book could happen in the real world. If you are looking for a different kind of Disney read, take a look at this title — you might be surprised as well.
Heralded as the Disney historian, Jim Kiorkis’ books are full of unique and thought-provoking tales. Kiorkis is a multi-published author, historian and lecturer that takes his craft seriously. He spends time to thoroughly research stories and utilizes a large quantity of resources ranging from the written to the spoken word. I personally like how Kiorkis disputes many common-place Disney myths with strong relatable facts; he is not afraid to take on some of the larger issues such as Walt Disney as a racist, male chauvinist or anti-Semite. Kiorkis’ wealth of knowledge seems almost limitless as each chapter offers a new subject. I enjoy reading his books slowly, often one or two chapters at a time. This way I can really devour the subject matter. Often, after reading a chapter, I am so intrigued by a subject I will begin doing research on my own. Do yourself, and any Disney fan you know, a favor and pick up a copy of The Vault of Walt series.