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Dream Factory

3.71 of 5 stars 3.71  ·  rating details  ·  2,172 ratings  ·  253 reviews
When the character actors at Disney World go on strike, the teens hired as replacements learn that it isn?t exactly the Happiest Place on Earth. Ella gets to be Cinderella, simply because the shoe fits. It should be a dream come true, but Ella no longer believes in dreams. Luke is a fur character, Dale the chipmunk. Chip is played by his girlfriend, Cassie, who is perfect ...more
ebook, 256 pages
Published May 17th 2007 by Dutton Books
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I thought the book had a good setting but I couldn't like the characters. The 2 main characters talked about bazaar things that are -in my opinion- unimportant and irrelevant. I could tell that the authors wanted Ella and Luke to look like deep thinkers but to me their conversations didn't sound deep, just weird. I mean, they talked about slugs -don't you just get goose bumps at the profoundness of it. And they talked about it like it was the most relevant thing in the world. From now on I will ...more
I knew I'd like this book the second I read the first line: "I wasn't at all surprised when Cinderella gave me the finger."


This book makes me grateful for friends that read, otherwise I probably never would have found this one.

Dream Factory centers around Disney World at a time of crisis. During a struggle between Disney character actors and corporate over wages and benefits, the employees have gone on strike. With no other option they're forced to hire inexperienced teenagers to fill the roles
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.

This book was really...cute. I don't really know any other word for it. It follows the lives of Ella and Luke, 2 kids who work at as characters at Disneyworld while the real employees are on strike. Ella is Cinderella, and Luke is Dale (as in Chip and Dale).

I am a huge Disney dork, so this was kind of the perfect book for me. It was very light hearted, cheesy at the right moments, and just fun. Who wouldn't want to work at the Happiest Place on Earth? The author seemed to know a lot about th
Savannah S
This book is called Dream Factory by: Brad Barkley. It is 250 pages long and I read it the week of october 22. The book is about a group of teenagers who are hired as replacements after the disney characters go on strike. The book is kind of a cinderella story between Ella, who plays Cinderella, and Luke, who plays Dale. In the begining Prince charming and Cinderella are dating and so are Chip and Dale. But then later on in the story the two couples go on a double date and get a surprise mystery ...more
Laura Martinelli
This is another one of those books that I really liked when I first started reading it, but over time, my feelings have gotten fairly lukewarm toward. I didn’t absolutely hate it, but the initial “OMG THIS BOOK” has gone down to “It’s good.”

I like the book’s set-up of the plot, but there’s really not much done with “Teen scabs working at Disney World!” angle, aside from establishing the setting and one encounter of the striking workers at the beginning. A lot of the plot is spent with either Ell
Sonia Reppe
Brad Barkley and Heather Hepler put the “zip” in zip-a-dee-doo-dah

Teen identity crisis against a backdrop of fairy tales and make-believe is what we get in Barkley and Hepler’s newest YA novel, Dream Factory, about teenagers who take temporary jobs at Disney World. The Disney World setting is an ironic contrast to teen angst, but this book isn't all about disillusionment. Nor does it go into familiar thematic formula—which one might associate with Disney—a villain, a hero, and a predictable endi
I'm torn on how I feel about this one. I generally liked the characters, and they all felt very real. But Ella and Luke were both so damned earnest and introspective and it was kind of annoying, because they aren't as important as they think they are. But in that way, I suppose they were very realistically 17 years old. *g*

I liked Luke more than Ella, who seemed to suffer in the two person writing - characterization wasn't as consistent for her. I also could empathize with Luke's situation, hav
Ally Robinson
This was an awesome book, especially for teens trying to find their place in the world, or anyone who loves Disney! The Disney World actors go on strike, and are replaced by teens from around the country. Ella, Matt, Cassie and Luke are in for a rude awakening as to what awaits them - each other. Along the way, the girls get into their own quarrel, while Luke tries to win over Ella.. while trying to dump Cassie. Ella is dealing with the loss of her brother, and Luke is desperately trying to get ...more
The original workers for Disneyland go on strike so teens are hired to work over summer vacation. The teens learn that Disney isn’t just a fairy tale and want to go as far as they can to discover the Disney parks biggest secrets.
Dream factory, written by Brad Barkley and Heather Hepler, is one of the most confusing books that I have ever read. It is hard to tell who is talking after a while because the chapters are different POV’s (point of views) of characters. The book has way to many key p
Dream Factory is a very appealing love story that puts a whole new twist on the fantastic,land of Disney World. This story shows the fun depiction of life within the Magic Kingdom. Brad Barkley's book, Dream Factory drew me in with its romantic plot and unique writing style.

One point that definitely needs to be made about this book is the theme. Dream Factory is one of those stories that has a very important lesson to learn by the end of the book. The lesson that I learned was to be yourself and
At first, I found this book to be a bit hard to follow. There isn't much of an introduction and you just jump right into the story. Ella and Luke spend the summer working at the happiest place on Earth with a bunch of other people around their age including Luke's hot girlfriend Cassie (which makes you wonder, why did they make her a chipmunk if she's so hot?) and Ella's best friend. Ella doesn't believe in dreams coming true much, and how could you blame her with the tragedy she's carrying arou ...more
Erin Behr
Dream Factory tells the love story of teens Ella and Luke, who have been hired by Disney World to take over the character mascot roles while the normal workers are on strike. Ella and Luke both have significant others and are just friends—or are they?

I love this novel because it's told from both characters' points of view: it has two authors (Brad Barkley and Heather Hepler), each of which takes a character and writes from his/her perspective. This makes for a lot of awesome dialogue and a grea
OH MY GOD!! i couldn't stand this book. I kept telling myself that it would get better but but the hole book was just BLEH!! The only reason i actually finished this book is because i cant not finish a book and this book aggravated the sh*t out of me. 1. the characters. I felt no connection to any of them, literally, they could have gotten run over by a bus and i wouldn't have even cared. I mean i tried to connect with them but no absolutely nothing, zip, noda. any many other things i found wron ...more
any book that has anything to do with Disney is my kind of book, and I really liked it. I've heard so many stories about Disney character workers, and this book brought those to life. it was great! can we have a number 2?
Such an awesome book. I read it a few years ago. Well written, great characters, and believable! 4 out of 5 stars.
Apr 07, 2008 Karla rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: teens - both boys and girls
Shelves: ya
This is a light romance set in Disneyworld which was the first draw for me. Ella and Luke fall for each other one summer while they are filling in for costume characters during a strike. This was a fun read but had more serious undertones for teens trying to discover what is real about themselves and the world around them. Disneyworld is all about creating and selling fantasy. So there are several levels of illusion the characters have to sift through - the illusion of their jobs, the illusions ...more
Here's the thing. I loved this book at the very beginning. But over the course of the book it just got... Meh. And then it got BLEH.

It took place at Disney World where Ella was hired to be Cinderella. Then Mark was hired to be Prince Charming, so they hooked up. But Ella REALLY liked Luke, who was hired to be Dale, and his girlfriend Cassie to be Chip. And Luke REALLY liked Ella back, but they were denying it because Ella didn't want to get hurt and Luke already had a gorgeous, "nice" girlfrien
Jessie Weaver
There are few things more satisfying than going into a book expecting a normal, humdrum experience and instead being tantalized by wonderful characters and an excellent storyline. This was my pleasure in reading Dream Factory by Brad Barkley and Heather Hepler. This is the authors' second team novel. They take turns writing from the point of view of Luke, whose parents are waiting from him to return so they can involve him in their family business, and Ella, whose parents have left the country ( ...more
Beth Rodgers
I have always been a sucker for happy endings. So, even though the title 'Dream Factory' could have deterred me, simply based on the fact that it makes it sound like dreams are simply manufactured rather than achieved, attained, or excitingly developed, I picked up this book. It was fun learning about what some of the inner workings of Disneyworld are (or might be, depending on how factual the book really is in that respect). However, Ella and Luke's relationship, the main crux of the novel, was ...more
Elizabeth Meadows
Perhaps if I were not a Disney cast member, I would have a different opinion of this book. Even if I could lay that aside, I really did not like the main characters, or any of the characters really (no pun intended). I wanted to read the book because of my association with Disney, but I was very disappointed in the inaccuracies of the overall setting. It did not seem as though the authors had done any research into the inner workings of Disney or how character performers operate. It is possible ...more
I thought the book was very good! I like how it took place in Disney World. They are there taking place of the characters who are on strike.The story reminds me of when I use to go to Disney when I was little. So I can really see the image of what they are trying to describe to the readers. In the book it has a love and mystery storyline. It keeps you on your toes the whole time wondering what is going to happen next. The love part explains how a boy was forced into dating a girl who he was not ...more
Ella and Luke both work at Disney World - as characters. Ella is Cinderella, and disenchanted with everything, while Mark, her Prince Charming, can't find enough to talk about that isn't Disney.

Luke plays Dale while his girlfriend Cassie plays Chip. When the characters are given a scavenger hunt, Cassie grabs Mark to be her partner, in order to win. Ella and Luke become partners by default. Both struggle with feelings for each other, until they finally believe in the 'magic' that brings them tog
Find the original review here at This is the Story of My(Reading) Life

When I heard about Dream Factory a few months ago I knew I had to pick it up right away. The story is about a bunch of kids that get hired because the character actors at Disney World go on strike. As someone who is Disney obsessed as well as having worked there this just sounded like a Brittany book. You've got the backdrop of the Magic Kingdom, the Disney references and college age kids doing what I was doing when I lived
Maria Garcia
Genre: Realistic Fiction
Reading level: 9th grade
Interest level: 8th grade to older
Summary: Dream Factory is the story of a group of teenagers who work at Disney World during summer when the workers who are the Disney characters go on strike. Ella is the main character of the story and who happens to be Cinderella, and Luke ends up being her prince charming dressed up as Dale one of the chipmunks. Through the story the characters discover that the “magic” commercialized by the Disney land of dre
It was a fun read but not the usual love story you can find, It take place in the wonderful world of Disney but is not as easy as in the movies. I was not so pleased with the dual point of view because it's not my favorite way of telling a story but the book and the story were easy to follow. Ella is a strange character and I don't really like her so I was pleased to read Luke's point of view. The characters act a bit too much like older ones at times but it's not such a big thing for the story ...more
This book was exactly what I needed - super cute, adorable, and just overall extremely entertaining. I am a HUGE Disney fan, so naturally, if it has to do anything with Disney, I will be reading it. This book isn't exactly focused on Disney per say but the romance between Ella and Luke was so cute. It's the perfect summery read.

This is set in Disney World. Naturally, I love Disney World and have been there so many times, it's just like the palm of my hand. If there was anything that drew me fro
"Dream Factory" is about teens being hired to work at Disney World while the normal characters have gone on strike. Ella and Luke have become really good friends working as characters at Disney, but Luke has started to like Ella more than just friends-even if Ella has a boyfriend and Luke has a girlfriend. When their boss decides to make the new cast members go on a scavenger hunt, Ella's boyfriend pairs up with Luke's girlfriend. Everyone else was already partnered up, so Ella and Luke had to ...more
I'm impressed by the fine line walked by this book. On the one hand, it's an expose of Disneyworld - we meet annoying bosses, see behind the curtain in a lot of ways, and for goodness sake, the premise is that the character workers go on strike and a bunch of random teens have to take their places temporarily. On the other hand, the bubble never completely pops. Yes, one character is made fun of because of his devotion to the Kool-Aid. But at the end of the book, (view spoiler) ...more
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BRAD BARKLEY, a native of North Carolina, is the author of the novel, Money, Love, a Barnes and Noble "Discover Great New Writers" selection and a "BookSense 76" choice. Money, Love was named one of the best books of 2000 by the Washington Post and the Library Journal. His novel Alison's Automotive Repair Manual was also a "BookSense 76" selection. His short fiction has appeared in over two dozen ...more
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Scrambled Eggs at Midnight Jars of Glass Alison's Automotive Repair Manual: A Novel Money, Love Another Perfect Catastrophe: and Other Stories

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“You asked me if I believed in magic, and I said yes, and that's how. You just step out, start pulling your life out of the air. You make friends, you find work you really like doing, you find places. You find diners and Laundromats. You find beaches. You find a junk car and drive it for a month, then lave it beside the road. You find someone to fall in love with you. You make it all up as you go. Or, you know, maybe it makes you up.” 14 likes
“Ella, if it's magic, then nothing is supposed to happen.” 4 likes
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