Sundays are for Book Reviews: Mousejunkies!

So, it’s no secret that we love Walt Disney World. We enjoy studying up on the trivia, reading about every aspect of the parks, and (of course) planning trips to “the World.” It was hard to believe that there were people more in love with WDW than us. But they’re out there, and they’re calling themselves Mousejunkies!

In his book Mousejunkies!, Bill Burke sets the scene by describing his first adult trip to Walt Disney World. Having only vague memories of his trip there as a child, he and his wife booked a vacation expecting just a chance to get away for a week. What they found instead was a new addiction. Mr. Burke doesn’t hold back in telling you just how addicted he quickly became (eventually spending $20,000 to become a Disney Vacation Club member), but in relating what it was that captivated him, you can sense the same magic he felt, the same magic we ALL felt, the first time we stepped onto Main Street USA and saw Cinderella Castle in the distance. Granted, I won’t be spending $20K there anytime soon, but I can understand the fascination with the happiest place on earth.

Mousejunkies! gives you information you might want to know about the parks, the hotels, the cruise line, the Disney Vacation Club, and all of the additional activities Disney has to offer on site, like golf courses, spas, fishing, parasailing, etc. What it doesn’t do, however, is give you an EXHAUSTIVE list, like the Passporter series, the Unofficial Guide series, or Disney’s own Birnbaum publications will. Using only Mousejunkies! as a guide, first-time guests will likely have a difficult time planning a trip, as the text is heavy on commentary but light on details. And a lot of “tips” are just opinions, some of which didn’t match my own. For example, I LOVE the Gran Fiesta Tour ride at the Mexico Pavilion (hello, Three Caballeros, what is there NOT to enjoy?) and Pizzafari, my favorite restaurant, is located in Animal Kingdom, the only park where Mr. Burke insists that there is NO good food. (Though I agree with him that there is something not quite right about Figment and his strange, strange Journey into Imagination.) The book is opinionated, light on details, and full of random stories about quirky areas of Disney life.

However, that’s what made it such enjoyable reading for me. Mr. Burke is hilarious, and he tells the greatest stories about what he’s encountered on his many trips to the World. It’s a very entertaining read, especially if you’ve been to WDW. And I can guarantee that there is no other guide book on the market that will let you in on where the cleanest bathrooms are in each of the parks. (Seriously, that’s in there.) There are contributions throughout the book from other Mousejunkies that are likewise entertaining and humorous. I particularly enjoyed Mousejunkie Walt’s take on how he sliced open a toe at Epcot (by trying to avoid stepping on a toddler) but refused to go to a hospital and miss out on a day of Disney magic, instead requesting a wheelchair from concerned cast members so that he could still explore and enjoy. Hilarious!

If you love all things Disney and are counting down the days to your next Orlando vacation, you will really enjoy this book. I read my copy in two days and wished that it had been longer! (I hear there’s a part two coming out…) It was a very, very enjoyable read.

And it was very timely, as we just booked our next Disney vacation! Woo-hoo! See you soon, Mickey!

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