I have been a Star Wars fan for a long time. I remember being around the age of 9 or 10 and playing make believe that I was Princess Leia. As Leia, I could fight and do the rescuing too. I grew up and I grew away from the Star Wars fandom, partially because I didn’t know the extent that existed. One fateful convention day around 15 to 20 years later, I went to a panel about women in the Star Wars fandom and it opened my eyes to a world I had no idea existed. There were all these women discussing a fandom I thought I had left back in my childhood and it felt amazing to be there and listen and find out about all these new and interesting things that were going on within the Star Wars world. I fell back into the fandom hard and I’ve been happily free falling ever since. I was curious to see if the character of Princess Leia would hold up to time and if I would still think she was the amazing badass I remembered her to be. Spoiler Alert, Princess Leia is fucking awesome. I found Carrie Fisher’s first memoir because I wanted to learn more about the amazing woman behind one of my favorite characters.
Carrie Fisher is blunt. She starts off the book by informing everyone that she has had electro shock therapy and that she is bipolar. Carrie talks about her massively confusing family tree and her history with drug and alcohol abuse. We learn that Carrie’s drug overdose was an accident; and that she found herself very surprised by what had happened as it certainly was not what she intended. It made her a more relatable person because she describes the incident in such a confounded way, it made it feel like it was something that could happen to anyone; like pouring too much laundry detergent in your washing machine. What I found interesting was how strong her relationship with her mother was. Some people have strained relationships with their mothers and Carrie and her mother lived right next door to each other. I also appreciated the level of self awareness that she treated her childhood with. She knew she didn’t have the average childhood and she didn’t blame any of her problems as an adult on it, which was refreshing.
The biggest problem I had with this book was that it was too short. I felt like the chapters were brief glimpses into her life and it was as though I were looking at her life through a hole in a fence. I had no idea that Carrie was so funny or had such dry wit. The awareness that the book was written with was enough to make me like Carrie even more, but I still wanted more. The stories are engaging and it was very quick read. I hope there is more depth in her next memoir. I look forward to reading more of her stories. I recommend her book to anyone who has loved Princess Leia and wanted to know more about her.
I rate this book 4 out of 5 stars.
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