Friday, 13 January 2017

The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher

"I stood there as if my breasts and I were somewhere else"

As a little girl, I always wanted to be Princess Leia. The cool chick that keeps up with the boys and still manages to indulge in a romance. She was forthright, a survivor and even chained up in a metal bikini looked equal parts amazing and sarcastic. What heady stuff, Carrie Fisher wrought on screen.
Like most little girls that grew up watching the strange, and often incestuous, hi-jinks of Star Wars, - okay maybe not like most little girls - I was transfixed that this leader with the strange ear muff hairdo demonstrated you could still be a take charge kind of girl, work with men and fight the evil ones on your own terms. The actress behind one of the few females in space was just, if not more impressive. An amazing actress, novelist and always entertaining interview subject, it is so sad that Carrie Fisher is no longer with us and a rare treat that she left us with some intriguing memoirs over the course of her life.

The Princess Diarist,  was a much welcomed Christmas present for me from my good friend and I was eager to devour it. Upon hearing of its author's untimely demise, this joy was tinged bitter-sweet. What is so captivating here is the young, voice of the inexperienced Carrie, recounted by the more wider lived, older version. The Carrie that is brought forward front and centre is the young, wide-eyed actress from one of my favourite films and her innocence and ability to get swept up in youthful exuberance reminds me so much of myself  from 17 to 20. Granted she looked way better in a metal bikini- but the sentiment remains.
Her much lauded depiction of the love affair with Harrison Ford takes on the importance that early sexual connections do, it is all consuming for the young, innocent party and a strange, if beneficial, burden for the older, more worldly one.

The book commences in the year of my birth, the year Star Wars  was filmed and a plucky young woman, with exceptional showbiz pedigree and a wry, entertaining voice made her mark on all of us. Vale, Carrie Fisher, gone but never to be forgotten, not even in a galaxy far, far away.

5 out of 5 stars burn brightest.

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