I actually finished this book at least six weeks ago, but it’s taken me a while to get the courage to put my feelings down in words—this is my first Carrie Fisher book review since she passed.
Fisher is a gifted writer. All of her books carry her signature wit and wisdom served in equal doses. So far, I’ve only read Shockaholic, Surrender the Pink, and Wishful Drinking, but the common thread of sur-thriving is something that keeps me both laughing and crying—and anxious to read more.
It’s hard for me to pick an overall favourite book because so far, at least, there is no book that is lacking. Each of her books is a favourite for different reasons. As many in the beauty community say, it all comes down to personal preference: what plot point sticks with you the most, what journey can you truly relate to.
With that in mind, I have to say my favourite Carrie book is Shockaholic.
Her detailing her struggles with manic depression, ECT, and her relapse after her friend Greg’s death spoke to me—especially how she was going through all this when she was performing Wishful Drinking. Reading, in her own words, about how she overcame each setback over and over again gave me hope for my own, ongoing recovery.
There are also some amazing, hilarious chapters nestled in there on Michael Jackson and Elizabeth Taylor—things you might think would seem out of place in the book, but they end up all working together as a whole, and I enjoyed every second I was reading them.
However, the final chapter—on her father’s final months—was what spoke to me the most. She wrote about caring for her father until his death, which she was not present for. From there, she discusses death in general: accompanying your friend until they go to the place where you can’t follow, and living your life afterwards.
With Fisher’s too-soon passing, I’ve found myself reading and re-reading and listening to the audiobook version of this chapter, trying to cope with her loss. As ridiculous as it might sound, it feels like she’s speaking to me, telling me what I need to hear when I need to hear it. It’s given me the courage to try and move on—live my life because she can’t.
Overall, I can’t recommend this book enough, especially to people who are living with mental illness and addiction.