adbl_ms_membershipImage_includedwith_altText_B076FLV3HT
adbl_ms_membershipImage_includedwith_altText_B076FLV3HT

1 audiobook of your choice.
Stream or download thousands of included titles.
$14.95 a month after 30 day trial. Cancel anytime.
Buy for $29.95

Buy for $29.95

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Publisher's Summary

The Disneyland Story: The Unofficial Guide to the Evolution of Walt Disney's Dream is the story of how Walt Disney's greatest creation was conceived, nurtured, and how it grew into a source of joy and inspiration for generations of visitors. Despite his successors' battles with the whims of history and their own doubts and egos, Walt's vision maintained momentum, thrived, and taught future generations how to do it Walt Disney's way.

©2014 Sam Gennawey (P)2014 Audible Inc.

What listeners say about The Disneyland Story

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    283
  • 4 Stars
    86
  • 3 Stars
    26
  • 2 Stars
    4
  • 1 Stars
    1
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    222
  • 4 Stars
    86
  • 3 Stars
    41
  • 2 Stars
    14
  • 1 Stars
    9
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    277
  • 4 Stars
    77
  • 3 Stars
    15
  • 2 Stars
    5
  • 1 Stars
    0

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great book, even with minor production issues

Before reading this book, I read the reviews and almost moved on. There were many complaints about the reader or the production quality in regards to pausing.

Let me tell you how I felt regarding this issue.

First: this book is very good. It offers a detailed and fascinating view of the inception and construction of Disneyland from its concept to the present.

Second: the reader does a fine job and is not distracting or difficult to understand.

However, there are some minor production issues regarding proper spacing in time between sections in the book. The reader simply moves from one section to the next without much indication. Where you would expect a beat or a pause, the reader just keeps going. I don’t attribute this to the reader though, but to the production.

That said, it’s not very distracting once you realize it’s happening. The whole book is chronological (for the most part) so it flows well.

I highly recommend this book if you are interested in the subject matter. Be aware of this “pausing” issue and you will enjoy the listen.

10 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

I Was There

Any additional comments?

My parents moved to pre-freeway and pre-Disney Anaheim when I was two-years old. As I approached six years old I remember sleeping with my window open, smelling orange blossoms and hearing the Mark Twain whistle from a few miles away.

In short, I enjoyed this book very much. In fact, I listened to it twice, back-to-back. However, I believe my enthusiasm was because this was a page from my life.

I remember going to Disneyland many times, meeting Walt sitting at the end of main street, no crowds and enjoying all the park as it evolved.

Even my Grad Night (Anaheim High School) was held at this venue. I'm not sure if non-Disney fans will enjoy the book as much as I did. However, I can attest to the fact that it is an excellent narrative on the evolution of the Magic Kingdom.

14 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

The narration is killing me.

2 1/2 hours in but doubt I can finish with this narration. I have over 800 downloads this is in the bottom 5 narrations for me.

If you want a great book on Disney go with "Walt Disney the Triumph of the American Imagination" great book, great narration that gives you much more than Disneyland and intimately brings Walt's story to you. I listened to the unabridged version. 33 hrs. and actually listened twice with many books marks on things we can learn from one most extraordinary people there has ever been.

22 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Good book, dismal reading

I am a fan of Disneyland and Disney history. I’ve met Bob Gurr, and Alice Davis, and Tony Baxter. And I was set to love this book - and it’s good, but not fantastic. The stories are all pretty standard in Disneyland history, but there were a handful of new things I learned which is always fun. The narrative jumps around a bit, even though it’s generally in chronological order it does still jump around which can be hard to follow, especially if you’re starting and stopping your listening often. I did appreciate all of the first person stories from Imagineers in the book.
If I was reading the book, I’d probably like it a little better. But this narration. Oh Jose - this narration is the pits. The readers voice is good, but it sounds like he may as well be narrating an economics textbook and not a book about Disneyland. It’s very monotone and dry. And the mistakes - there’s a small section that’s repeated, which I don’t know if that’s a book issue or a recording issue. Also, a LOT of names are incorrect. If you’re a Disney fan, you know of course it’s Marry Sklar, and not Skylar, for example.
Overall, if you’re a Disney fan it’s a good book - but I might recommend buying the actual book and reading it, rather than listening to this recording if that’s an option for you.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Don't they have editors for the narration?

What did you like best about The Disneyland Story? What did you like least?

For the Disneyland aficionado--casual or manic--this is a wonderful book. Provides just enough of Walt's background to help the park make sense, explains what makes it unique, and helps us understand the story behind each ride, with just enough ride description to allow the Disneyland fan to close the eyes and get dreamy.

What other book might you compare The Disneyland Story to and why?

It is journalistic in style--just the facts. The narrative voice is clear and relatively unemotional. It is history with very little commentary.

How could the performance have been better?

The performance almost ruins the book. The worst part--this derives from the way the book is put together--is that the narrator does not provide enough "white space" (audible pauses) between sections. The book is written in chapters, but the chapters are very long and are divided into multiple sections with headings. The narrator hurtles from one section to the next as though just reading the next sentence in a paragraph. This results in repeated "WTF" moments for the listener. Just a slight pause between sections would serve as a transition. Although I know this is unlikely, the narrator makes it sound as though he was paid to get through the book as fast as possible, or as if he did not enjoy the job.

The author mispronounces many words. How can this be--how can a professional reader get away with these errors, and is there no one to listen, catch them and fix them before the book goes live? If I were the author I would be mortified! I suppose, unfortunately, the author has no authority to enforce corrections. A few examples: "Vermin" Von Braun (5.40), Marty "Skylar" (Sklar, 9.42 and throughout) "Saguro" cactus (should be saguaro, 11:50), and "persimmion" trees

If this book were a movie would you go see it?

With another narrator! Actually there are quite a few movies and archival documentaries on this topic.

Any additional comments?

Please re-do this book. I would listen again to another narrator!

10 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Disney History

Very good and detailed. As a former cast member I found it very interesting and informative. This along with DisneyWar by Stewart are some of the best Disney history I have read.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Started stronger than ended

Really gets deep into the creation of Disneyland, especially the early years. Through the further it got in time from the beginning of Disneyland, the more it turned into high level highlights. That may be due to the material available. I really enjoyed the book overall, addicting even. I can't wait to go back to Disneyland and see it a whole new light thanks to this book.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Amazing details in the history of Disneyland

I am so glad I listened to this book. It was Amazing!!! Yes, the reader jumps from chapter to chapter quickly but you can get used to it. If you love Disney and it’s history you must listen to this book. I loved hearing about the background of each attraction. I’m certain I’ll go back to it again and again!!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

The Disney dream is recounted masterfully

Never has a book of nonfiction about something so seemingly mundane as a theme park made me come so close to tears. Disneyland is not just a place, but a dream brought to life. The remarkable dream of a truly remarkable man.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Follow this guide deep down the rabbit hole

I love the amazing details behind the scenes of building the Disneyland parks I never knew. And I have every book about Walt and Disneyland and this is a great detailed book!

1 person found this helpful

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for John
  • John
  • 05-03-15

A realy great insight

What made the experience of listening to The Disneyland Story the most enjoyable?

Lots of detail. Gave a really good inside view of the characters that made up the Disneyland story

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for C. Rosani-Allen
  • C. Rosani-Allen
  • 04-12-21

Shame about the pronunciation...

I really enjoyed this book - I have read and listened to many other works that cover the same subject area but this one had a fresh take. I have also read other Sam Gennawey books so I knew that I would find his special angle (urban planning) quite interesting. However, my listening pleasure was slightly diminished where the narrator would mispronounce words that are quite common in other Disney books and podcasts: an example is having to listen to "WED" spelt out all the time when the convention is to just say "wed". This particularly irritates when used in other places, like for the "WEDway movers". Or possibly even worse is Marty Sklar's name pronounced as "Skyler" - here is another very well-known personality in the Disney universe, so the fans would certainly notice the difference! So overall this was a great listen, but I had to put up with these niggles that may seem small, but they did tarnish the experience.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Ste
  • Ste
  • 07-19-18

very interesting

I like Disney, always have and I think I always will. This book provides a thorough history of the California parks and it's very well produced.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Steve
  • Steve
  • 06-01-18

Loved it

If you love Disney theme parks this book is a must. It is packed with interesting facts. I loved it

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Wendy
  • Wendy
  • 07-14-15

The History of a Landmark

This is an interesting look at a great entertainment icon. From its humble beginnings to looking forward to tomorrow. A great listening experience for anyone who has been or is planning to visit Disneyland for the first time.