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DisneyWar, by James B. Stewart '73, on Several 'Best of 2005' Lists

December 17, 2005

stewart disneywar.jpgDecember 17, 2005, Greencastle, Ind. - "This is one of those books that will cause you to exclaim 'wow!' when you're finished," opines the Houston Chronicle's Steve Powers of DisneyWar, written by Pulitzer Prize-winning 1973 DePauw University graduate James B. Stewart. "At least it did me... It presents a picture that's a sharp contrast to the gentle years of Walt Disney's sweet, homogenized world, of Mickey and Bambi and Dumbo." Powers lists DisneyWar first among "significant business titles of 2005."

"Beneath the placid, happy surface of the land of Mickey Mouse and his pals are turmoil, discontent, deceit and outright war. Stewart's exhaustive research peels back the seemingly bland Disney facade to reveal the disturbingly dark side of Disneyland," Powers adds. Read his complete article at the newspaper's Web site.

james b stewart.jpgBusiness Week ranks Stewart's book among 2005's top ten business books, calling it "an impressively researched account of CEO Michael Eisner's rise and fall and the near destruction of an American institution. Stewart draws upon mountains of documents and a high level of access to Eisner to paint a picture of persistent misjudgments, run-amok egos, and world-class paranoia in the Magic Kingdom."

The editors of Finance Asia.com list DisneyWar among ten recommended books for holiday gift-giving, asserting, "this is a must read on how not to run a company."

The book by Stewart, who chairs DePauw's Board of Trustees, was one of eight finalists for the inaugural Financial Times and Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year Award. USA Today's David Lieberman called the best-seller a "page turner," adding, "DisneyWar now stands as the best of the fast-growing subgenre of business books about the selfishness and ineptitude that ended the era of the Imperial CEO. Stewart is an accomplished storyteller who had the luck or foresight to stake out a company filled with colorful executives in a glamorous business -- at the moment investors decided they had had enough."

James B. Stewart won a Pulitzer Prize for his work as front page editor of the Wall Street Journal. Now editor-at-large of SmartMoney magazine, Stewart has authored a number of books, among them Den of Thieves, Blind Eye, Blood Sport and Heart of a Soldier: A Story of Love, Heroism, and September 11th.

In February, he appeared on MSNBC's Hardball to discuss DisneyWar. A story with video clips from the program can be accessed here.

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