Monday, July 24, 2023

Between Books - Disney Presents The Haunted Mansion

Book cover for Disney Presents the Haunted Mansion with an illustration of the hitchiking ghosts in front of the mansion.

The first time I rode the Haunted Mansion, I was afraid. I hate scary things. I also was a grown adult. So if I was scared, I think kids would likely be also.

Disney Parks Presents The Haunted Mansion with music by Buddy Baker, lyrics by Xavier Atencio, and illustrations by James Gilleard presents a kid-friendly version of the mansion. The printed lines come directly from Atencio’s lyrics, with a verse or two on each page. The illustrations are all new with fun child approachable images. The lyrics and illustrations provide a walkthrough of the attraction, with scenes that those who have enjoyed the attraction will find very familiar. Along with the book, included in the packaging is a CD of the beloved song.

Disney Parks Presents The Haunted Mansion is really cute. I can see how for some young readers they could come to enjoy this packaging and begin to fall in love with the Haunted Mansion. It may even take away some anxiety in enjoying the Mansion. It may even bolster the courage of some before seeing a potentially scary live-action adaption.

The enclosed CD does make me chuckle a little bit. My copy is still sealed in the envelope not because I’m refusing to open the package for collecting, but because it is actually harder to listen to a CD than it was 5 to 7 years ago when all the music I listen to is digital. I did listen to a copy of the song with the book. It led to some really fast page-turning as the lyrics played. And then as the song went into reprises, a lot of playing without turning. I honestly liked it better without the tune.

The Haunted Mansion is beloved by young and old. Disney Presents The Haunted Mansion is a fun part of that program to create young fans. It is definitely one path to helping young fans enter fandom. It is cute, but perhaps a little misleading for those preparing for a live-action fright!

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