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Wishful Drinking

3.47 of 5 stars 3.47  ·  rating details  ·  14,684 ratings  ·  2,020 reviews
Finally, after four hit novels, Carrie Fisher comes clean (well, sort of ) with the crazy truth that is her life in her first-ever memoir. In Wishful Drinking, adapted from her one-woman stage show, Fisher reveals what it was really like to grow up a product of "Hollywood in-breeding," come of age on the set of a little movie called Star Wars, and become a cultural icon an ...more
Audio CD, 176 pages
Published February 17th 2009 by Simon & Schuster Audio (first published December 2nd 2008)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Buck
When the original Star Wars trilogy came out, I was too young to have nurtured any grotty, pubescent fantasies about Princess Leia (though I guess by the time of Return of the Jedi, I was old enough to be confusedly excited by those harem scenes with Jabba the Hutt). But now that I’ve read Wishful Drinking, I kind of want Carrie Fisher for my girlfriend. Except that she’s my mother’s age. And she’s a recovering alcoholic/drug addict with bipolar disorder and a lavishly messed-up family. Other th ...more
Jason Koivu
Like most boys popping wood for the first time in the late '70s and early '80s, I had a "healthy" interest in Princess Leia Carrie Fisher.

description

Later in life, whenever I've seen one of her books on the shelves, I'd think about possibly reading it, out of interest for what she might have to say regarding those iconic Star Wars movies. I even gave a little shit about what she's been up to since then. Call it a passing fancy, one that I've passed up time and again for year upon year, right up until rece
...more
Collin Kelley
A memoir about drug abuse, sexual compulsion and manic depression shouldn't be this funny, but in Carrie Fisher's hands it's a laugh riot. Wishful Drinking ($21, Simon & Schuster) is slim, packed with photos and basically the script for her hit one-woman show of the same name. Fisher calls this book a "a really, really detailed personals ad," and covers everything from the dead, gay Republican in her bed (which was tabloid fodder for weeks in 2005), her missing-in-action, over-the-top parent ...more
Kelly
Mar 21, 2009 Kelly rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those who wish to learn a bit more about Carrie Fischer and Star Wars and everything in between...
Shelves: autobiography
This has to be one of the funniest biographies I've ever read. Fischer's frankness reminded me of Esther Williams' autobiography The Million Dollar Mermaid. And what she does tell is pretty cut and dry with no euphemisms (for example Fischer describes that when Elizabeth Taylor's husband died in a tragic accident, her father "consoled her with his penis").

It's a very short read and that might be my biggest complaint. "You wouldn't believe what I'm NOT telling you," Fischer teases in her book. An
...more
Lena
It is not often one gets the chance to read the memoirs of someone who has has the dubious distinction of having been made into a Pez dispenser. In Wishful Drinking, Star Wars icon Carrie Fisher has plenty of stories to tell about that and many other fascinating subjects including being raised by famous, scandal-plagued parents, her drug abuse and mental disorder, marriage to Paul Simon, her recent electroconvulsive therapy, and what it's like when a gay republican dies in your bed.

Carrie Fisher
...more
Christia
I knew when I spotted this book on the shelf at the bookstore that I wanted to read it. I have always loved both Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds. I have read at least two of Fisher's novels, and I figured if her nonfiction was half as funny as her fiction, then I would enjoy this too. Plus, who can resist the picture on the cover of Princess Leia slumped over a martini glass and pills?

I was not disappointed. I laughed out loud several times, and I really liked her quote near the beginning that
...more
Kirsten
The sad thing about this book is that my favorite part was the cover. I mean, that's a brilliant cover!

But overall? Not the book I was hoping for. Fisher seems to have mostly transcribed her one-woman show, and the problem is, what works for a performance doesn't hold up very well as a book. Everything's sort of glossed over with self-deprecating jokes, and there's not a real sense of narrative or much in the way of self-reflection. I didn't really want a celebrity tell-all, but I would really b
...more
Joel
Carrie FIsher is a hilarious mess. I mean, yeah, her sense of humor trends a little too Bruce Vilanch for my tastes, but she'll certainly say anything about anyone, including herself. Yes, this book is a jumbled transcription of her one-woman show, but that's probably why it made for such a fun audiobook. Plus it's only three hours long, so the catty-gossip-to-length ratio is even more efficient than at your local trendy salon. (OH NO YOU DIDN'T! :::snap snap snap::: :::head shake:::)

Also, the i
...more
Sarah
Wishful Drinking is the saddest biography I've ever read. I'm sure die-hard fans of Carrie Fisher may enjoy and appreciate this book, but if you're looking for some fun celebrity comic-relief, definitely pass this one up.

Wishful Drinking begins with Carrie Fisher explaining how proud she is to be starting her life over at the age of fifty-two after having undergone electroshock therapy. She states how she can't remember much of her life up until the writing of Wishful Drinking, and also tries to
...more
tee
Carrie Fisher is cray cray. And I'm allowed to call her crazy because 1) she admits she is crazy and 2) I am also crazy. It's like how bald men can tell bald men jokes, or handicapped people reserve the right to lol about disability issues but it's no-go territory if your able-bodied. Fisher is a tad unhinged but lucid enough to be able to string together an erractic bunch of tales; stories about her mother Debbie Reynolds (whom she is besotted with), her absent father, Cary Grant and various ot ...more
LAwritersgroup
I wasn't a huge fan of this book. In part, I didn't connect to her self-deprecating style of humor. There were a few very funny lines and moments that got me to laugh out loud, but overall I felt that she did a little too much of "this happened to me" rather than taking us on those journeys which made the book feel dry (no pun intended). It was, however, a quick and easy read which says a lot about her clear talent as a writer.

The most fascinating choice of hers when writing the book was to ref
...more
Byrdie
May 10, 2012 Byrdie rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: alcoholics, codependents, fans
I can believe that this book was writing in conjunction with a one-woman show. It's choppy and jumps a bit, and sometimes loops around to continue the same story two or three vignettes later. In doing so, however, it's more like curling up with a friend who has recently started having breakthroughs with therapy and feels the need to talk her realizations out so that she can gain better insight on them. It's indulgent as all hell, but it's obvious that's the point.

I am appalled and sorry that sev
...more
Mom
I liked this book but it was confusing at times and I sometimes felt that I wasn't getting the joke. I really like Carrie Fisher and I have always thought she is very talented. This book is further proof that my belief that Hollywood stars shouldn't have children is correct, at least until they are no longer in the limelight. Still, I liked this book and would recommend it to fellow fans of Carrie Fisher.
Rekha
I read this one in under an hour, and it was probably the perfect length for this book. My likes and dislikes came out pretty even.

I liked: her descriptions of her childhood experiences with old Hollywood. I am a pushover for a good (or even a mediocre) Cary Grant story. Also, I loved how not-precious she was about her Star Wars experience and her own acting ability. You kind of get the feeling that she is grateful to be a part of something so iconic, but that she also knows that the product, on
...more
Nick
I don't normally read celebrity biographies, but this one seemed different, and it was. Carrie Fisher has honed her writing skills through four novels, which helps a great deal. This book is a very strange and very personal journey through a convoluted life, one in which she admits to a lot of self-destructive behavior. Somehow, though, it's kind of a strangely uplifting and funny book about depressing subjects. She clearly has a lot of anger and frustration about her father, Eddie Fisher, and d ...more
Christina
I met Carrie Fisher once at a party in Montecito. I had no idea what to say to her since I couldn't stand to be one more person who said, "I saw you in Star Wars." I felt I should be able to come up with some thing more normal, you know? And after reading this book, I'm sure that's what should have happened. Because no one needs to have the not-normal-ness of their life pointed out by random strangers when they are clearly already very aware of it.
Aaron
Do you have a friend, who no matter how much you like her, you have to acknowledge is a horrible story teller? She tells them with too much back story, and after every overlong vignette concludes she pauses expectantly waiting for you to crack up at just how hysterical it was that Sarah would say that to Jean in line at the supermarket. Well, now you can have that experience in book form, written by someone who isn't even your friend.
Tattered Cover Book Store
Dec 03, 2008 Tattered Cover Book Store added it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Tattered Cover by: Mark P
Shelves: staff-recommends
Mark P says:

Great cover illustration of a sloshed Princess Leia. At last ditching the red-haired bastard stepchild that is the 'semi-autobiographical novel' the actress sets down what actually happened. Well, what she thinks happened. At least what she can remember.
Merry
Jan 01, 2011 Merry rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Merry by: gift from Lee - Thank you Lee
ugg... Sarcasm over the top, "Wishful Dishing"...I didn't get it, I hated how she talked bad about everyone, to include herself. Joking about mental illness etc.. Ok, so she found her way to cope, but it is not funny to many who struggle everyday and do not share her star struck life/lifestyle. She talks bad about her parents, she outwardly blast former sexual partners and childishly attacks political figures as well...she blast people with a southern accent. Hello, I am from the South so that p ...more
Arminzerella
Wishful Drinking is based on Carrie Fisher’s one-woman show by the same name, and it definitely reads like more of a stand-up act than a biography. Carrie Fisher attempts to milk her alcohol and drug addictions, her ECT (electro-convulsive therapy) treatments, her failed relationships (and the history of her parents’ failed relationships), and the trials and tribulations of being the iconic Princess Leia for laughs. Some of it works, some of it doesn’t. If it had been more detailed and balanced ...more
Joy
This is a helluva good memoir! I finished it in one day. Longer review to come ASAP.

Some more thoughts on Wishful Drinking.

I've read several of Carrie Fisher's novels (I recommend Postcards from the Edge) but her memoir is much more fun. It's written in her droll, self-deprecating style and covers her life growing up the daughter of famous parents; the Princess Leia years; her marriages and finally being diagnosed with bipolar disorder. "My diagnosis was manic depression. I think today they call
...more
Kater Cheek
This book is basically the written version of a stand-up comedy/memoir of Carrie Fisher.

She talks about being the daughter of famous parents (Debbie Reynolds and Eddie Fisher) about having her parents' marriage broken up by Liz Taylor (If you're going to have a homewrecker destroy your marriage, why not use the best?) She also talks about her lifelong struggle with bipolar disorder, with addiction, and with the aftermath of a certain famous role she took on which some of us may have seen her in
...more
Bobby Simic
After spending 2 months on Octavian Nothing #2, this one came about like a much needed drink after a long day at work (metaphor so intended). I finished it in one evening.

Those expecting a chronological autobiography from the woman familiarly known as Princess Leia will be disappointed. This is more a recollection of some of her more bizarre memories. Fisher relates her experiences with space bras (or lack thereof), Paul Simon, showbiz parents (mother Debbie Reynolds steals the show, in my opini
...more
Jim
The first thing I had to get past was Carrie Fisher sounding like Liza Minnelli meets Phyllis Diller on thorozine. The second thing was the beginning of the book coming across as a self aggrandizing, name-dropping ECT fest.
After that, however, the writing gets very funny, particularly surrounding the relationship between Carrie and Mom (Debbie Reynolds for the seriously un-informed). This is the book version of her one woman show of the same name so she knows the material quite well, as one woul
...more
Kirsti
Mar 23, 2009 Kirsti rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Kirsti by: Michelle H.
This book describes Fisher's broken family, her two destroyed marriages, and her history of mental illness, addiction, and substance abuse. Strangely, it is a lighthearted and entertaining read.

I enjoyed Fisher's comments, such as --

"Instant gratification takes too long."

"I have too much personality for one person but not quite enough for two."

"Saying you're an alcoholic and an addict is like saying you're from Los Angeles and California."

"Cry all you want, you'll pee less!" [attributed to Fish
...more
Chana


The first date I ever went on with my husband was to see Star Wars. I always liked Princess Leia although Harrison Ford was my favorite. Princess Leia had a nice edge to her.
Carrie Fisher has that edge in spades. She is very funny and I laughed throughout her book although I laughed the hardest at the picture of her in the Abnormal Psychology textbook on the biology of bipolar disorder.
Kind of sad that much of Hollywood seems to have no concept of monogamy and the happiness and stability it can
...more
Terrie
I love biographies, but seldom of celbrities. I wouldn't have chosen this if it hadn't been recommended by my friend Rebecca. This was a very quick and VERY funny look into Carrie's addictive, bi-polar, manic depressive, Star Wars life. I love her honesty and self-evaluation. She is very brave to share so much of herself so honestly. What a great sense of humor Carrie has!
Rich Rosell
Is it wrong to admit reading about someone's dysfunctional family life, drug/alcohol dependency, manic depression and electroshock therapy was entertaining?

Carrie Fisher - in what is essentially a book version of her one-woman show of a few years back - recounts her childhood of "Hollywood inbreeding" on through the dark years of her teenage and adult life, but she does it with self-deprecating humor and blunt honesty.

It's a short read - just shy of 170 pages - but there's a lot going on. If sh
...more
Caleb
Wishful Drinking is a short, readable, and for me highly enjoyable memoir which I find myself returning to at some point every year.

Through this memoir Fisher offers a window into her personal experiences and thoughts on relationships, celebrity, drug and alcohol addiction, and mental illness. Fisher is blunt in her recounting of the occasions she shares but they lack much if any severity given the gently self-deprecating and humourous style in which she writes here.

The style of writing and tr
...more
Brooke Bove
A dramatic separation of the parents when a child is really young is enough to make any childhood dysfunctional. Add in the fact that those parents are famous, that her father was largely absent, that she grew up surrounded by celebrities, and that fame and stardom came at a young age for Carrie, it seems almost inevitable that she would become an alcoholic.

I mean, obviously there must be a lot more to it than that, but that's the simple premise Carrie puts before us. That's all the explanation
...more
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90150
Carrie Frances Fisher is an American actress, screenwriter and novelist. She is most famous for her portrayal of Princess Leia in the original Star Wars trilogy.
More about Carrie Fisher...
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“Sometimes you can only find Heaven by slowly backing away from Hell.” 55 likes
“I thought I would inaugurate a Bipolar Pride Day. You know, with floats and parades and stuff! On the floats we would get the depressives, and they wouldn’t even have to leave their beds - we’d just roll their beds out of their houses, and they could continue staring off miserably into space. And then for the manics, we’d have the manic marching band, with manics laughing and talking and shopping and fucking and making bad judgment calls.” 43 likes
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