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on July 15, 2002
There is virtually no new information in this book and a good deal of it is rehashed from the first one. The first Mouse Tales book was charming, entertaining, but unfortunately David Koenig couldn't resist being greedy; he went for another bite of the apple, but this apple is riddled with worms.
Here, I'll save you the time of wading through 216 pages for a few nuggets of real information: The submarine and skyway rides closed because they got old; as new attractions were planned, they were phased out. A guy tried to do a neat thing with changing the Jungle Cruise to correlate with the time period of the Indianna Jones ride, but there was no consistent policy about changing the spiels, and people got their feelings hurt. Tomorrowland has given up trying to show tomorrow and instead shows a history of attempts to show tomorrows. Characters don't roam the park as much (who could blame them when so many parents encourage their brats' outright cruelty?); instead one gets to wait in yet another line for photo ops with them. I think that's about it.
I cannot understand some of the other reviewers here, in particular the one who mentions people being injured by not following directions on rides. All that detailed, fascinating information was in the first book, not this lame one.
So much could have been told -- where are the backstories to the attractions in Toontown, or Indy? The Indy preshow is so detailed -- who thought up the idea of the practical jokes incorporated in it? Do the strange markings on the wall really translate as "AT&T Sucks"? What is it that one sees in that curious shadow on the wall in Roger Rabbit? What sort of cast members are recruited for Toontown? How do they bear the incessant cartoon noise of their job site?
Regrettably, as he is so fond of saying Disneyland visitors do, David Koenig checked his intelligence at the door before writing this book.
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on November 5, 2002
Are you obsessed with the mouse? Do you love Disneyland? Or are you just curious what makes Disney tick?
Personally, I fit in with the last two questions. I have visited Disneyland numerous times and everytime I've always asked myself and (to their annoyance) my family how did the Disney company make such a place. This same question is often asked by an audience member watching a magic show -- how did s/he created the illusion? Well, this book reads like a truthful tabloid. Sounds like a contradiction? It's not.
While I was reading this book I felt like I had picked up the latest issue of a weekly tabloid that proudly read on the front cover "Ex-employee of Disney tells all!" But this story is truth, unlike the majority of the tabloids, I'm sure. If you wanted to know how Disneyland works, read this book. I was laughing and enjoying the reading from cover to cover. Being an ex-amusement park employee myself (Legoland, CA. for over a year) I could related to a lot of the stories that were told by Disneland employees (or I should say cast members). This book will give you a new perspective about the mouse and his land. I think it's a very good read!
Make sure you read the first book "Mouse Tales: A Behind-the-Ears Look At Disneyland" in addition to this one.
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on April 15, 2002
I finished it in one sitting. I had read the first book years ago, and they are quite humorous, as well as insightful. It's more like an insiders view of Disneyland and it's inner workings, and failure among management. Interviews with current security, employees, and previous employees give you the behind the scenes stories you won't find many places. In fact, many of the people interviewed for the book wouldn't allow their names to be printed in fear of being fired! It's quite a remarkable book, IMHO. It details how low morale, job eliminations and lack of training lead to serious injury of two guests waiting in line in 1999, and one of them never regained consciousness and died a day later. It also details the more known Disney deaths, as well as the shenanigans employees played throughout the park, stories about the people inside the character costumes, and other assorted goodies. This book is full of little facts that I'm sure Eisner doesn't want you to know. I firmly believe Walt is spinning in his grave.
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on September 26, 2000
Disneyland must be a very depressing place to work. At least that's the impression I get from reading "More Mouse Tales", David Koenig's followup to his earlier, lighthearted, much more fun "Mouse Tales". Apparently, having depleted his store of lighthearted anecdotes, Koenig has turned to tales told by disgruntled former employees who cannot accept the fact that Disneyland is run by a corporation and is no longer the spiritual child of founder "Uncle Walt".
Any number of Disney hatchet jobs exist, even a monograph by journalist and novelist Carl Hiassen, and I know where to go if I want to read one of these anti-Disney tracts. In fact, I often do, just to gain a wider perspective; I am a Disney fan, but I keep my eyes open and my sense of reality polished.
I was not expecting such a negative and depressing experience from reading this book however. Koenig focuses on tragedy, corruption, poor management and high prices here and only barely lets the reader up for air. No story is too sordid, no hearsay is too circumstancial to be included in "More Mouse Tales". Ironically, Koenig points out in his introduction that the sales of his earlier book and the resurgence in Disneyland attendance roughly coincided (don't be fooled, the comparison is bad science and bad mathematics) and, noting the recent poor attendance, suggests that maybe it's time for him to lend his assistance once again. Ladies and gentlemen, if this book is David Koenig's idea of assistance, don't ever let him change a flat tire for you.
If you have a clear head and don't automatically leap onto a pro-Disney soapbox whenever someone criticizes, you may still enjoy this book. It includes plenty of insider info and lots of diagrams of beloved attractions. If you are a Disney-hater, you'll love it.
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on August 10, 2000
This book has some new information not found in the previous book. But most of the information is repeated from his first Mouse Tales Book. Items that where a whole chapter before are now no more than a quick paragraph or two. A lot of the information seems to have been culminated from newspaper and television stories. He also states arrogantly in the preface that the reason that attendance went up in the park AFTER his first book came out was due to the fact that his book was published. He equates the millions and millions and millions of people that went to Disneyland with the few thousands that Mouse Tales where sold. He then states that "to raise attendance again, I came out with a sequel." I bought this book thinking that there would be new information that was not in the first book and other books on Disneyland and Walt Disney. If you take out the same information that was in the second book that is in his first, this book would be less than half as long as it is now. If you are going to write a book about "Behind Disneyland" why not give us information on how the attractions operate, how the maintenance crews do their jobs, etc.? Instead of the same old informtaion about how the "park cares more about profits than it workers/guests", "the pride of working there is not the same as it was in the past", etc.? What job or company in the entertainment field or any other field has NOT had these issues come up? How come Disneyland is the one targeted the most? Sure it has its problems with employees, maintenance, etc. But so have a lot of other companies. Problems will never go away. But this book paints a gloomy picture about how the park is going downhill fast and there seems to be no stopping it. If that was try, why is attendance in the millions each year? Why do people want to go there if it is so bad?
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on July 28, 2000
I read the original book and like the original, this book gives the reader information about what it must be like to work at the Disneyland Park. Like the original, it gives information about the people who work at the park and some of the things that the Disney Company does to try to maintain the feeling of magic for its customers. I enjoyed both this book and the original, but I have to wonder if I would have the same feeling about this book if I had not already read the original. I guess I will never know about that for sure.
I enjoyed reading the many stories about how things work at Disneyland. I especially enjoyed the little boxes at the bottom of many pages of this book that quoted funny customer comments and sometimes gave bits of trivia about the park.
I was fascinated by the stories of people who get hurt after ignoring or purposely circumventing safety mechanisms and rules while trying to pull some sort of shenanigan. Worse yet is how these same people turn around and sue the park, trying to blame the park for not protecting them from their own foolishness.
This book also details some of the difficulties that have occurred between management and labor. While I found some of this interesting, I found most of it to be tedious reading. All companies have management/labor difficulties from time to time and I personally don't care to read about it in a book such as this. This aspect seemed incongruous to the rest of the book.
Overall, I recommend this book to anyone who is interested in how Disney runs their parks and makes those parks so popular. This book is a good sequel to the original, but I am afraid that the reader might have to read the original book to get the most from this book.
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on November 21, 1999
Having worked at Disneyland (67-74)I'm truly saddened at management's attention to bottom line dollars at the expense of the people that made Disneyland, Cast Members. I'm twenty-five years removed from my last day of employment (see page 191 for details) But putting that aside, my memories of Disneyland have always been of good times, particularly the social aspects of working there.
David brings a harsh reality to what life in present day corporations is all about. Reduce costs at the expense of service , enhance shareholder equity. Particularly unsettling were the chapters on the Jungle Cruise and Maintenance Division. The Good Old Boy network survives at Disneyland. Always has, always will. On a positive note, recently spent a week at Walt Disney World and any morale and service related issues are certainly not in evidence. We thoroughly enjoyed our visit.
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on February 10, 2003
I have read both the first book and this book. The first "Mouse Tales" book was delightful, with it's history of Disneyland's conception and opening (and all of the tales of what went wrong), hi-jinks of its employees, and knowledge of how Disneyland has evolved.
"More Mouse Tales" tells the story of the Disney empire as it becomes the "Evil Empire". It talks about the strike-breaking, the employee disgruntlement with stupid guests, the anger and hatred that goes one where none of the guests can see. As a Disney fanatic, I found the book to be more depressing than informative. The Disneyland protrayed in this book is less like "the dream that nearly wasn't" and more like a Coney Island with a new coat of paint.
While it may be accurate, most Disney fans will finish this book with a sour taste in their mouths.
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on March 12, 2003
I read Mouse Tales twice in a two week period. I could barely get through this book! There were pages I skipped because I found it so boring. Being that I read Mouse Tales within the past couple of months, I saw repeated statements in More Mouse Tales. It seems as if the author ran out of things to say, so he found employees (or many former ones!) to trash Disneyland and to blow the lid off The Happiest Place on Earth and it's politics. Disneyland fans do not need to know this. I would rather be oblivious to the nasty politics, backstabbing and other [stuff]that goes on there. Disneyland is there to make people forget this gloomy world - not to be reminded of it as this book does.
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on February 16, 2000
If you are a true Disney fan, then buy this book. It cronicles what it is like working at "The Happiest Place on Earth". I recently bought annual passes to Disneyland and I thought it would be cool to know what "really" goes on at the Magic Kingdom. Unfortunately, in this book, many of the stories are from a while ago. Another thing I didn't like about this book was the way the stories were told. The author made it sound like some of these events happen everyday when in fact they are odd occurances that happened once or a few times in 45 years! Overall, decent book. It is very easy to read and entertaining.
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