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Kingdom Keepers: Disney After Dark by Ridley…
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Kingdom Keepers: Disney After Dark (original 2005; edition 2009)

by Ridley Pearson, Tristan Elwell (Illustrator)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1,189616,747 (3.81)34
Member:SparklePonies
Title:Kingdom Keepers: Disney After Dark
Authors:Ridley Pearson
Other authors:Tristan Elwell (Illustrator)
Info:Hyperion Book CH (2009), Paperback, 336 pages
Collections:2013 Archive
Rating:*****
Tags:Tweens, Teens, Fantasy, Adventure, Audrey Rauter, 2013

Work details

The Kingdom Keepers by Ridley Pearson (2005)

  1. 20
    Kingdom Keepers II: Disney at Dawn by Ridley Pearson (disney42)
  2. 00
    Hidden Mickeys: A Field Guide to Walt Disney World's Best Kept Secrets by Steven M. Barrett (KingdomKeeperCM)
    KingdomKeeperCM: If you enjoyed solving the clues in KK, you will love Hidden Mickeys! Ever heard of Walt Disney World's Best Kept Secret? The Imagineers hid Disney icons in the Parks, on everything from pats of butter to original statues of Characters. Now Steven M. Barrett brings you a guide to find these wonderful icons! What's more- you can turn these guides into contests if you are in a long waiting queue (pretty soon, nobody will need Fastpasses because of these books)!… (more)
  3. 00
    Witch and Wombat by Carolyn Cushman (SunnySD)
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» See also 34 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 61 (next | show all)
An over-glorified advertisement for Disney. ( )
  ethanlu121 | May 2, 2016 |
First, I want to quickly sum up how I got this book. I was at Barnes and Noble with twenty dollars in gift cards, an hour to kill, and no brand-new hardcover money-grabbers to blow all my money on in one go. So, I bought three paperbacks instead: Because of Mr. Terupt, Out of My Mind, and Disney After Dark. I had read both of the other books previously (and, as an aside, absolutely adored them), but Kingdom Keepers was a new find. I'd seen tue fourth book around before multiple times but never the first, so seeing Disney After Dark at Barnes and Noble prodded me into taking the plunge of buying an unknown book.
Five years ago I (and, seemingly, the rest of the world) fell in love with the Percy Jackson series. And how did I discover Percy Jackson, you might be wondering? Well, you're probably not wondering, and you're probably wishing I'd just get to my review already. But I'll tell you fast: I got "The Lightning Thief" from Borders on a whim.
So, in the back of my mind I was hoping to find another great series like Percy Jackson in Kingdom Keepers. Keep this in mind as you read my review.
So. Kingdom Keepers. Disney After Dark. I have to admit, I thought the title was kind of cheesy when I started the series. I still do. But in a strange way, it fits the book - not that I'm saying the book is particularly cheesy (because it isn't), but it pretty much sums up the whole idea of the book.
Finn is a normal kid, except for the fact that there are holograms of him all over Disney World. You see, he and five other kids were chosen after auditioning to be scanned and projected throughout Disney World in Orlando, Florida as tour guides known as DHIs (which stands for both Disney Host Interactive and Daylight Hologram Imaging). The perks? Finn instantly became the superstar at school who everyone recognized from Disney World, he got a substantial amount of money for his college fund for the right to use his image and voice forever at Disney, and his family got mega gold packs so they could go to Disney whenever they wanted.
The downsides? Well, Finn can only go to Disney after specially clearing it with the security guards ahead of time, and only if he wears a hat so no one confuses real Finn with DHI Finn. This also means that when he sneaks into Disney World, he has to constantly be dodging guards who are trying to get him out of there before tourists spot his non-virtual-tour-guide self.
The side that's both up and down? Finn starts to dream he IS his DHI every single night. And there is a strange man named Wayne (an "Imagineer") in these dreams who claims that Disneyland is being threatened by the evil "Overtakers" - who include many of the villains from various Disney stories.
Finn tracks down the other four DHI hosts at their various schools, and learns they all are having the same dreams. When they all go to sleep within half an hour of one another, they are all in their DHIs at Magic Kingdom at the exact same place and can talk to each other. These dreams aren't just dreams; they're real. Add Maleficent (the witch from Sleeping Beauty, utterly unrelated to the upcoming movie), who is an Overtaker, and two strange girls - one strangely helpful, one strangely stalking - and you've got a pretty good picture of Disney After Dark.
Now, in this kind of book deep characterization is a bonus, not a must. We barely meet Finn's parents. Each character has a personality trait that is why they're "part of the team." , but at the end of the day Finn is the leader, Maybeck is the rough kid with a softer inside, Philby is the computer genius, Charlene the girly make-up expert, and Willa is a girl, who is smart. They stay faithful to their personalities, though, and each has an individual flavor as a character - but if you asked me what Willa's main goal in life was, I couldn't answer farther than "help the Imagineers defeat the Overtakers."
Does it live up to Percy Jackson? Um, no. Sorry, but it's not quite humorous enough, and all the detailed references to Disney World, while fun (very fun!) are a bit confusing. It's good, though, and I've already gotten and read the second book (also in one go, these books aren't exactly Moby-Dick). I'll request the rest of the series from the library as soon as I pick up the nine books waiting for me right now.

This review is also on my blog. ( )
  Jaina_Rose | Mar 1, 2016 |
I liked it much better the 2nd time around. Now that I have an AP to Disney I was able to follow it much better. I'm looking forward to the next one. ( )
  AnaKurland | Jan 30, 2016 |
I would have adored this book as a kid. A group of kids find themselves in the Magic Kingdom at night, and they have to battle creatures from the park rides, led by villains from Disney movies. As an adult I was somewhat less enchanted, but that's okay. I'll still be looking at the park in a new light when I visit in a couple months. ( )
  melydia | Oct 23, 2015 |
The Kingdom Keepers is a sorry excuse for a novel. This novel was so bad that it offended me, and I am offended by very little. It’s really not a novel but a pathetic advertisement for the Walt Disney Company. I can’t even count how many times the author broke off from the story to give a soliloquy about the greatness of Disney, or going in depth about this product or that product of theirs. I can only assume that the company paid this writer to write this series of novels. In this story, a group of teens have to go into the Magic Kingdom and fight off the evil Disney characters. Some of the characters in the novel attack the heroes while others help fight off the baddies. It’s so bad, it’s not even worth going into the plot. Suffice it to say, save yourself from having to read this book. It’s simply not worth it.

Carl Alves – author of Blood Street ( )
  Carl_Alves | Aug 27, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 61 (next | show all)
Ridley Pearson's fantasy is fast paced and technologically savvy. Finn and his friends make repeated forays after hours into the very guts of such Disney icons as Tom Sawyer's Island, It's a Small World, Adventure Mountain, and other rides both tame and wild as they lay siege to Maleficent, an evil witch whose minions are at work to destroy the Disney mystique. The kids hang out at the park looking for signs and signals that will aid them in their nighttime quest for securing Disney power. Their parents are mildly suspicious, but Finn and his pals are fast talkers, willing to face their nighttime nemeses alone, rather than bringing in adult forces. Gary Littman reads with a variety of accents, some of which are less successful than others, and it's easy to differentiate among both kids and adults. Given how much Disney has seeped into the very core of Americana, most listeners will be able to understand the references and will know for whom Maleficent is a foil. While the details about why one would become a hologram for Disney are slighted, the sleuthing aspect of the tale has universal appeal.
added by lampbane | editLibrary Journal, Francisca Goldsmith
 
For anyone who has imagined what goes on in Walt Disney World after the gates close to the public, Pearson's (Peter and the Starcatchers) tale and Littman's authentic-sounding narration, in middle-schooler Finn Whitman's voice, offer a suspenseful all-access pass to the Magic Kingdom behind the scenes-filled with action, technology and a tricky (and implausible) riddle. Finn lands a cooler-than-cool opportunity after he becomes a model for a new breed of "holographic hosts" (Disney Host Interactive/Daylight Hologram Imaging) at Disney World. But the experience gets weirder than weird when Finn and the other four DHIs find themselves transported to the park via their nighttime dreams and must save the Magic Kingdom from Disney witches and villains called "Overtakers" by solving a puzzle said to be left behind by Walt himself. Littman reads at a smooth pace, speeding up along with the story's tension. He nails realistic kid-like reactions and dialogue even though listeners might find much of the plot hard to believe (and some of the plugs for Disney a bit over the top).
added by lampbane | editPublishers Weekly
 
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This book is dedicated to anyone and everyone who ever wondered what happens when the gates are closed and the lights go out.
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He found himself standing next to the flagpole in Town Square, in the heart of the Magic Kingdom.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0786854448, Hardcover)

When Disney comes looking for five teenagers to serve as actors for a new technology-Daylight Hologram Images, or DHIs-there is more to it than meets the eye. Strange things have been happening inside the Florida park: parts from one ride are found mysteriously moved to another; in the Fantasmic! show, the dragon unexplainably triumphs over Mickey; little blips in story lines and "offstage" antics by characters trouble managers. Finn Whitman, a middle-schooler, goes to sleep one night and has the dream of a lifetime: he "wakes up" inside Disney World as his DHI character, a glowing hologram. He meets an old man there, Wayne, who claims to be one of the original Imagineers and explains to Finn that he "and your friends" have a mission to save the park from forces that humans can neither see nor hear. Not believing his dream, but not totally discounting it, Finn, back in real life, sets out to find the four other kids who were chosen to be DHIs and in doing so he learns an eerie fact: he is not alone in this "dream." The others have had similar experiences. What if this is for real?

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:07:00 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Thirteen-year-old Finn Whitman and four other young teens have been transformed into holgorams to be guides for visitors to Disney World. When Finn is unexpectedly transported to the Magic Kingdom in his hologram form, Wayne, an Imagineer, tells him that he and the other guides must save the park from the scheming witch Maleficent and the Overtakers.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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