30 AugThe Epcot Explorer’s Encyclopedia 33/52

I found out about this next book about through the buzz it received on Twitter. I’m fairly active in the Disney Parks online community, so when I heard about The Epcot Explorer’s Encyclopedia by RA Pedersen, I knew I had to get it. Epcot is my favourite of the Disney theme parks so I’ll gobble up anything that I think will expand my knowledge on the park.

The Encyclopedia covers the background of the park, and the history and detail that went into each of the pavilions that form Epcot.

For somebody just getting into being a fan of the Disney Parks – and Epcot – I would recommend this book as a good starting place. Well researched, it features a lot of description of the attractions themselves. If you’d never visited Epcot when it was known as EPCOT Center, this book would also be good because it also offers the reader the experience of revisiting attractions that have been “upgraded” or even replaced over the years as things have aged or lost and gained sponsorships.

I particularly enjoyed the obvious love and devotion that was put into the section about Horizons. This extinct attraction was always one of my favourites, and it was a sad day when the decision was made to completely tear it down instead of attempt to save and restore it.

As somebody who’s favourite park is Epcot and who has worked there, I found that this was just a refresher on everything I already knew about this theme park. The book is described as a “tell-all” look into the park. Personally I thought the book just touches the surface (this is granted that “telling-all” would likely require more than one book!). I had been hoping to learn something new about my favourite theme park.

One thing that bothered me about this book was the fair amount of author bias. Given that it’s an encyclopedia a more neutral look on the park would have been nice. That said, the book description does mention wit and mocking, so I suppose I should have expected that more.

The other thing that bugged me was that I had to order this through Amazon and not my local bookstore because it was self-published. I hope the author can find a distributor, because I would like to see this book reach a broader audience!

When it comes down to my final rating I have to give this book two separate scores. If I didn’t know anything about Epcot I would likely give this book four stars. As somebody who already knows the information in the book, I give it two stars, but would definitely recommend it to people just learning about the Disney theme parks.

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