We just spent a week at the "happiest place on earth" and while very hot, it was indeed a happy experience. Dave and I had a commitment to view some property in Orlando, Florida and decided to do it at the same time our youngest daughter and her family were vacationing there. We saw the requisite Disney sites and, of course, couldn't miss the Harry Potter themed park at Universal. Some pics are below.
I started to think about books which take place in or are about amusement parks. Most of them are scary, which makes sense, I guess because turning a happy place into a threatening one is a good book, right? Thankfully, no tragedies occurred during our theme park time but here are some books I've read and recommend if you want an amusement park related summer book.
Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton - At first it seems like a terrific idea, take DNA from extinct dinosaurs and animals and create a Jurassic World but what happens when the inmates take over the asylum. Long before the movie and its sequel, Crichton wrote this "what if" story and, book or movie, it is as scary as it gets when contemplating a visit to a theme park! If you haven't read the book, maybe you should give it a try.
Devil In The White City by Erik Larson - Chicago 1893 is brought to life in this true story of two men, one the architect of the 1893 World's Fair and the other a serial killer who used the fair to entice his victims. This is a tale of good and evil at a time when America was trying to show its place in the world.
Disney After Dark by Ridley Pearson - In children's book, five teens who are Disney "guides" find themselves pitted against Disney villains and witches that threaten both the future of Walt Disney World and the stability of the world outside its walls. The teens need to figure out how to use technology to win the day. This is part of The Kingdom Keepers series.
Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury - A traveling town carnival, a mysterious magician, two teenage boys and a town full of people with secret desires and fears, what could go wrong? This classic 1962 tale by Bradbury has lots of bad stuff and good stuff and enough plausibility to be believable.
The Stepford Wives by Ira Levin - What happens when intelligent, professional women are being turned into submissive, "perfect" wives? Joanna Eberhart is a talented photographer having recently moved to Connecticut with her husband and children. Oddly all the wives in the community appear to be perfect, great cooks, not a hair out of place, ideal mothers, and Joanna becomes worried. Doing some research she learns it was not always like this, add to this a husband who was a Disney engineer and the book takes another twist. There is definitely a surprise ending.
Do you know of any books about amusement parks you'd like to recommend? Let me know.