Disney's Land: Walt Disney and the Invention of the Amusement Park That Changed the World by Richard SnowWhat it is: a lively, well-researched chronicle of the development of Disneyland, the iconic California amusement park that opened in 1955.
Read it for: profiles of the workers who tirelessly helped make the park a reality, like former United States Navy admiral and submarine designer Joe Fowler, who built the Mark Twain Riverboat.
Try this next: David Koenig's Realityland: True-Life Adventures at Walt Disney World offers an immersive behind-the-scenes look at the creation of Disney's east coast park.
Five Came Back: A Story of Hollywood and the Second World War by Mark HarrisStarring: directors Frank Capra, John Ford, John Huston, George Stevens, and William Wyler, who put their talents to use during World War II by creating military training films, propaganda, and documentaries.
Read it for: a perceptive look at how the war impacted their lives and careers -- particularly Stevens, whose experiences filming the horrors of Dachau informed his directing of 1959's The Diary of Anne Frank.
Media buzz: Five Came Back is the basis for the Emmy Award-winning Netflix docuseries of the same name narrated by Meryl Streep.
We'll Always Have Casablanca: The Life, Legend, and Afterlife of Hollywood's Most... by Noah IsenbergWhat it is: a page-turning chronicle of the production of 1942 classic Casablanca, chock-full of fascinating behind-the-scenes tidbits; a nostalgic celebration of the film's enduring legacy.
Did you know? Dooley Wilson, the actor who portrayed pianist Sam, didn't know how to play the piano; many of the film's supporting cast were real-life European refugees who can be seen during the emotional "La Marseillaise" scene.
Seduction: Sex, Lies, and Stardom in Howard Hughes's Hollywood by Karina LongworthWhat it's about: how eccentric businessman and aviator Howard Hughes became a successful film producer, often at the expense of the actresses he sought to employ -- and control.
Why you should read it: Rife with sobering parallels to the #MeToo movement, Seduction illuminates the long and troubling history of Hollywood power players' exploitation of women.
Author alert: Film historian Karina Longworth is the creator and host of the popular classic Hollywood podcast You Must Remember This.
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