Raise your hand if you’re going to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter this summer! We have some serious J.K. Rowling fans around here, people who would do just about anything to have a butterbeer at Hogsmead and find a perfect wand at Diagon Alley. But maybe Hogwarts is not the right fantasy land for all bibliophiles. Maybe, just maybe, there are other imaginary worlds that a unique reader might like to inhabit. Here are ten inspirations for book-themed amusement parks we hope never to visit, or even to exist.
Poe Land: Grab a bite at Pita and the Pendulum, then head on over to entomb a cat (or a friend–FUN!) in this gothic wonderland. Liver damage not included in the admission.
Fight Clubhouse: the first rule of the Amusement Park is you don’t talk about the Amusement Park.
Waiting for Godot-world: It’s just a very long line. The only longer wait is at Disneyland during Utah’s spring break.
Cormac McCarthy-Palooza: No Country for Old Men. Or Women. Or Children.
Explore the magic of cross-border violence. Cruciate, scalp-loose, eyeless. Luxuriate in the blood-spattered and bedraggled rags of victims new and old. Relax in the lifeless crater moon-bald and cold of a not-distant America. See the fever dream of family fun waver on the red horizon, heat shimmers snakelike and dusty beneath bone-bleached sky.
Family and senior citizen discounts may apply.
Grapes of Wrath: You can practice packing your meager belongings into a broken down truck before joining the park sommelier for a tasting that evokes dust and slow, grinding desperation.
Hemingway-ville: No women, short rides, lots of guns and fishing. If you’re lucky, you’ll spend some time on a boat.
Kafka Fun Station: Are you a cos-player? Have a fascination with bugs? Feel a kinship to the absurdity of the world? See things from a nihilistic point of view? If you answered yes to two or more of these questions, we have the vacation resort for you!
The Pet Sematary: Forget the cat cafes and the dog parks. Your favorite family pet needs to cathart.
Ahab’s Revenge: Not so much a park as an attraction, each afternoon promptly at three, a staff member playing the great captain of the Pequod blows a replica of the great whale to smithereens. Rows 1-8 will should prepare for the splash. See it here.
Shuster-land: Have you ever read Unwind? Entrance would be restricted to those ages 13 to 18. Bwa-ha-ha-ha….