Monday, December 21, 2009

Wishful Drinking

Carrie Fisher

Scale of 1 - 10:
Pros: Wry look at growing up with celebrity. Fisher's writing is engaging and very much like she's invited you to lunch.

Cons: Maybe a tad too glib. Fisher's sense of humor sometimes misses the mark for me, and her language is occasionally shockingly coarse. Then again, that's her style, and I'm not going to judge her for it. Some people might find it off-putting, however. This is not a book written for the prim crowd.

My take:
People who grew up with the Star Wars saga will probably find it interesting, though while Star Wars figures prominently in it, it's not a book about Star Wars. It is a book about manic-depression/bipolar disorder and addiction, as well as growing up in an unconventional home, with celebrity parents. I found myself wondering how much of Fisher's novel, Postcards From the Edge, was taken from real life and drawing parallels between that book and Wishful Drinking. Drinking is a very fast, glib, and fairly enlightening read. While Fisher does not seem to feel sorry for herself in the slightest, it made me sad that someone as beautiful as she is has such a poor image of herself and has clearly learned to put herself down to prevent hearing someone else do it first. I could see a lot of the teenage me in teenage Carrie...minus the drinking, drugs, and celebrity, of course. The only thing I think Fisher could have gone into more detail about was electroshock therapy, which she has undergone, and which she says was the catalyst for her one-woman show, upon which the book is based. She talks about it several times, but only peripherally. I would like to know what prompted her to engage in that form of therapy and how it's working for her, as well as what it's like. Regardless, I find Wishful Drinking a brave book and wish Fisher well.

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