by Carrie Fisher
I took one look at the cover and knew I had to read this. Peter and I recently re-watched all the original Star Wars movies, because I turned him on to the X-Wing: Rogue Squadron series and we wanted to reacquaint ourselves with some of the lesser known characters. (If you are a Star Wars fan, I highly recommend that series of books. They are wonderful!) Anyway, Princess Leia passed out with her martini glass was too good to pass up. :-)
Wishful Drinking is Carrie Fisher's first memoir. As a Star Wars fan, I guess what I really wanted was a book all about her time making those movies, because like so many other narrow-minded fans I believe that her life began and ended with the Star Wars trilogy. This is not that book, because I'm a dolt and there is much more to Carrie Fisher than silly hairdos, awesome metal bikinis, and dating "scruffy looking nerf-herders". This is about her addiction and mental illness, but it's not your typical "woe-is-me, popular-celebrity-brought-low" memoir. It is written in the self-deprecating, humorous style that has made Carrie Fisher a very popular fiction writer. (Remember Postcards from the Edge?) And she is very, very funny!
The book is short, easy to breeze through, but loaded with detailed anecdotes about her strange life, from her famous parents (Debbie Reynolds and Eddie Fisher) and their various marriages/affairs to Star Wars and becoming a Pez dispenser to her own marriages, accidental overdose, AA meetings, bipolar diagnosis and continuing road to recovery. It is all told in bits and pieces, each section not necessarily having anything to do with the others, and made me smile and giggle even when all I really wanted to know was how cool it was to work with Harrison Ford. (Though she tells a great story about when they filmed the scene in the trash compactor!)
Fisher apparently performs Wishful Drinking as a comedy show, and I could completely envision that as I read. But my brain still lurches wildly whenever I try to picture my idolized Princess Leia with such a potty mouth. And I think it is exactly that kind of type-cast thinking that helped send her *over* that non-fictional edge. In her honor, I promise I will try to separate "Carrie Fisher" from "Princess Leia" in the future, but it won't be easy!
NOTICE: (Updated March 5, 2010)
Beginning December 19, 2009, Books 'N Border Collies will be posting but only intermittently while I pursue personal goals. I plan to share some reading I'm doing, but there will be no reviews. I will, however, be sharing my exploration of vegetarian cooking and the cookbooks and websites I use to educate myself. I hope you enjoy it!